Senate Passes McConnell-Cosponsored Bill to Assist Families Adopting Children from Democratic Republic of the Congo
‘The passage of this bill through the Senate will help bring needed assistance to so many loving families across our country who want nothing more than to open their homes to a child in a need.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following comments regarding Senate passage of the Adoptive Family Relief Act – legislation he cosponsored to provide meaningful financial relief to families adopting children from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC):
“I just wanted to briefly say a few words about Senate passage of S.1300, the Adoptive Family Relief Act. The issue this bill addresses is of particular importance to me, and I’m proud to be a co-sponsor of the legislation.
“More than 400 American families – approximately 20 of them from Kentucky – have successfully adopted children from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, or DRC.
“However, due to the DRC government’s suspension of “exit permits” – which has been in place for close to two years now – many of these families have been unable to bring their adopted children home to the U.S.
“For example, although I was pleased to be able to help the Brock family from Owensboro, Kentucky with the return of one of their adopted sons last Christmas, their other son still remains in the DRC.
“To make matters worse, many of these families have been financially burdened by the cost of continually renewing their children’s visas while they wait for the day the DRC decides to lift this suspension.
“In an attempt to help these families, the Adoptive Family Relief Act will provide meaningful financial relief by granting the State Department the authority to waive the fees for multiple visa renewals in this and other extraordinary adoption circumstances.
“The bill builds on Congress’ bipartisan efforts on this adoption issue, including a provision in this year’s Congressional budget resolution to encourage a solution to the stalemate in the DRC.
“I strongly urge the DRC government to resolve this matter, and I truly hope there is a solution to it soon. But until then, I urge the House and President Obama to help us enact the Adoptive Family Relief Act. The passage of this bill through the Senate will help bring needed assistance to so many loving families across our country who want nothing more than to open their homes to a child in a need.
“I want to thank the bill sponsors – Senators Feinstein and Johnson – the 17 other bipartisan cosponsors, and the Judiciary Committee for their hard work and truly bipartisan commitment to solving this heartbreaking issue.”