ORGANIZATIONS EXPRESS INTEREST IN BECOMING ACCREDITING ENTITIES
The State Department reported that three private organizations – the Council on Accreditation, the Intercountry Adoption Congress and the World Child Foundation – and eight state licensing authorities submitted statements of interest to become designated accrediting entities under the Intercountry Adoption Act (IAA). The Department also established a second cycle for additional organizations to file statements of interest, stipulating that it is “ under no obligation to designate qualified accreditors who apply during this second opportunity period at the same time as other accreditors who applied by the initial deadline.” The second deadline is April 20, 2004. The public comment period for input on the proposed accreditation, approval and Convention records regulations implementing the IAA and Hague Convention ended Dec. 15, 2003. Additionally, the Departments of State and Homeland Security announced last month that they “will be working closely together during the coming year to craft new regulations to implement the Intercountry Adoption Act’s expanded definition of ‘adoptable children,’ and address procedural changes and new responsibilities that will be assumed in order to make Hague implementation a reality.” To read about accrediting entity applicants, go to: http://travel.state.gov/aea_list.html; to read about the second submission cycle, go to: http://travel.state.gov/rsi_second_opp.html; to read the press release, go to: http://uscis.gov/graphics/publicaffairs/statements/hague111703.pdf.