In honor of National Adoption Month, President Donald Trump issued a presidential proclamation Friday, urging pregnant women who do not want to become parents to choose adoption over abortion.
“My administration believes that every human life has inherent value, and encourages adoption as an alternative to abortion,” he wrote. “All children, born and unborn, deserve to have a chance at a better, more prosperous future. I commend the selfless men and women who preserve the majesty of God’s creation by providing children with a chance at a better life.”
He described adoption as “a loving option for women who experience unexpected pregnancies or are unable to provide for their children.” “Every year, countless families – including many who cannot have children of their own – cherish the priceless gift of an adopted child.”
According to the Adoption Network, “only 4% of women with unwanted pregnancies place their children through adoption.”
Trump began the proclamation by recognizing “birth families who make the difficult decision to place their children up for adoption,” commending “foster parents who care for children from difficult backgrounds” and celebrating “adoptive parents who open their families to those children in need.”
He also acknowledged the difficulties faced by hundreds of thousands of American children. “Sadly, last year, 153,258 children were placed in the foster care system due to neglect, and 86,694 children were removed from their homes due to drug abuse,” he noted.
“My Administration is committed to addressing the causes of child abuse and neglect, bringing healing to families who are struggling with addiction, and expanding the avenues for adoption. Additionally, we are continuing our efforts to strengthen families and prevent abuse and neglect to help ensure that children are able to remain with birth parents whenever possible.”
Trump cited “unprecedented action to end the opioid crisis in our country, increased funding and oversight of the foster care system, and opening more adoption channels to faith-based adoption and foster care providers” as examples of his administration’s efforts to strengthen families.
Additionally, he mentioned an executive order he signed in June to prioritize “the partnerships between private, public, and faith-based organizations to keep American families together, and when that is not possible, to find children forever families.”
“Our Nation is strengthened by the sacred institution of the family, and devoted parents who love and protect their adopted children. As a Nation, let us commit to ensuring a brighter future for all our Nation’s children,” he said.
After proclaiming November National Adoption Month, Trump encouraged “all Americans to observe this month by helping children and youth in need of a permanent home secure a more promising future with a forever family and enter adulthood with the love and connections we all need.”
According to the Child Welfare Information Gateway, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed the first National Adoption Week in 1984. Eleven years later, President Bill Clinton expanded the adoption awareness week to the entire month of November.
National Adoption Day, separate from the month-long observance, will be recognized on Nov. 21 this year. The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute, the Alliance for Children’s Rights and the Children’s Action Network teamed up to establish National Adoption Day as “a collective effort to raise awareness of the more than 120,000 children waiting to be adopted from foster care in the United States.”
Statistics from the Adoption Network show that there are 1.5 million adopted children in the U.S. and 7 million Americans who are adopted.