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Congressional letter to Oscar Berger Perdomo about Casa Quivira


Dear President Berger,

As Members of the United States Congress we are committed to eliminating the barriers - that hinder all children from their basic right to a permanent loving family. We are aware that the Guatemalan Solicitor General’s Office {PGN) recently took control of the Casa Quivira childrern's center near Antigua under the authority of a court order. We are writing to express our concerns in regard to this action and the potential for other similar raids on children‘s homes in Guatemala.

We support Guatemala`s efforts to protect the well—being of children through reform of the current system and implementation of the standards set by the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoptions through pending legislation.

Certainly, it is the government’s duty to protect the welfare of children in Guatemala if the care provided by its children’s homes is found to be negligent or detrimental. However, if the care in such homes, including that of Casa Quivira, is found to be suitable to the needs of children, we do not believe that seizing control as a means of preventing suspected corrupt adoption practices elsewhere is in the best interest of these Guatemalan children or the adoption process in general. During the reform process, we strongly urge Guatemalan authorities to avoid sudden unwarranted interruptions of established procedures because such changes can seriously and irrevocably disrupt the welfare of the children as well as the stability of the institutions caring for the children.

We respectfully request that you open the lines of communication to the prospective adoptive parents of each Casa Quivira child, detailing the status of their specific whereabouts, care and health. We ask for your leadership in pressing for a judicious investigation of each Casa Quivira child’s legal status and the timely processing of their anticipated adoption, should the child still be found to be available for adoption under Guatemala’s current law.

Thank you for your concem and work to protect the best interests of the children of Casa Quivira and all vulnerable children in Guatemala.


[list of signatures]

2007 Sep 7