She was adopted, assaulted & deported

Date: 2009-01-15

Mayura Janwalkar

MUMBAI: Nearly 20 years after she was adopted by an American national, 27-year-old Jennifer Haynes is back in Mumbai, seeking action against the Americans for International Aid and Adoption (AIAA), the agency that had processed her adoption papers.
Speaking to DNA on Wednesday evening, Haynes said, "I was fighting with the immigration authorities in the US. They said that my documentation for US citizenship was unfinished and wanted to deport me. With the Indian government accepting my repatriation, I came back in July last year. Ever since, I have been living in a Chembur hostel."

In her petition, which was mentioned before Bombay High Court on Wednesday, Haynes has sought a court direction to Central Adoption Resources Authority (Cara) to deregister AIAA and other foreign agencies, based in the US and registered with the Indian Government, and stop inter-country adoption until she is sent back to her family.

"For all these years, nobody ever told me that I am not an American citizen. It is because of AIAA that I have landed in this situation," Haynes said.
She has stated in the petition that her adoption process was carried out in violation of the UN Convention onthe Rights of the Child, 1989 and the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in Inter-Country Adoption.

Her advocate, Pradeep Havnur, said that the petition had been filed, but it was yet to get a date for hearing.

Born in India in 1981, Haynes was adopted by Edward Hancox, who flew her to the US in November 1989. It was the beginning of a nightmare for her. "I was sexually abused by my first foster father. I changed nearly 50 foster homes, but everywhere the abuse continued. Nobody was willing to accept me," she told DNA.

She married Justin Haynes in 2002 and lived with him and their two children -- Kadafi, 5 and Kanassa, 4 -- in Michigan. "My husband works in a construction company. I used to be a housewife. I talk to my family in Michigan only once in two weeks," said a frustrated Haynes. "I want to be back with my family. I am going crazy here."

Not having the necessary documents, she is finding it difficult to get a job in the city. "Now, I have no means to sustain myself. I am surviving on the money that my mother-in-law sends me," she added.


'My foster parents treated me like a slave'

Mayura Janwalkar
Friday, January 16, 2009 3:05 IST
Mumbai: At just 27,

Jennifer Haynes has experienced more than most people her age. In an exclusive interview with DNA, the thoroughbred American talks about being abruptly deported to her place of birth 20 years after she was adopted by an American couple.

Ramesh Nair / DNA
Nowhere to go: Jennifer Haynes is struggling to make a living after she was deported to India last year
A traumatic childhood
Born in Mumbai on July 29, 1981, Haynes was adopted as an eight-year-old by US nationals, Edward and Melissa Hancox, and flown to USA in November 1989.
However, her life was far from alright. She alleged that she was sexually abused as a child in her first foster home in Georgia. She then changed home 50 times, spending most of her life in Michigan. "I was abused there as well," she said.
"I did not complain to anyone because I was so young and I didn't even know what exactly sex was."
Haynes studied only till Class 10. "I kept moving from one foster home to another and nobody really cared about me. I was treated like a slave in many homes and not even sent to a public school until the government mandated my foster parents to do so."
Life after marriage
Haynes met her husband Justin through common friends and tied the knot on July 2, 2002, at the age of 21. "My husband is African-American and a year older than I am. He works with my father-in-law in his construction business," she said.
However, Justin was convicted for possession of drugs in 2002 and served a term in prison. Haynes too was convicted in a case of illegal possession of drugs in July 2004 and was under probation. When her case reached the boardof immigration, it was found that her citizenship formalities were left incomplete at the time of her adoption in 1989. The officials then decided to deport her to India.
"I didn't know I was being deported. I didn't even have my passport. I was just asked to pack my stuff and sent to India. I wasn't even allowed to speak to my family. I called them after I reached Mumbai and told them I was deported," she said.
Back to her birthplace
Haynes landed in India on July 2, 2008 -- her sixth wedding anniversary. "I landed in this country, away from my family and with no money. I had nowhere and nobody I could go to."
However, Haynes found a job as an English teacher and was staying at YWCA in Colaba. But after a month, she was shifted to a home for distressed women in Chembur
"I would have started a new life here had it not been for my children back in the US," said a visibly upset Haynes.
"I don't belong here. People treat you differently when you are not like them," she added.
Currently unemployed, Haynes now wants to get a job in a call centre. "I would then be able to have a place of my own. It is difficult for me to sustain myself because my family doesn't send me too much money.
They cannot even afford to come down and see me."

your life

i feel for you its truly sad for you that you dont get to see your kids and to no that your husband is out cheating on you and selling lots of drugs and use the money to help you with a lawyer and he is to busy messing around at the casino and hotels getting girls pregnet getting caught selling drugs and telling on people to get out of trouble thank god there grandma has them and takes care of them and as far as him working   " lol"    you no thats a lie he sells drugs and his dad smokes it i hope that one day you will be able to get your kids back cause he is never with them and if he does have them he leaves them with his girlfriend or takes them with him to drop drugs off and thats sad it seems that he would hold them close to his heart cuz there part of you hes holding something close to his heart its another woman if thats what you call 16 year old girls best of luck to you.

Pound Pup Legacy