Over 1600 Iowans Join Braley in Letter to Secretary of State John Kerry to Help Resolve Stalled Congolese Adoptions

Jun 17, 2014

Iowans sign open letter as hundreds of US adoptions continue to be needlessly delayed

Washington, D.C. – After months of advocacy aimed at resolving hundreds of stalled adoptions from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the United States, Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry calling on him to make solving this issue a top priority. Over 1600 Iowans from across the state signed the letter in support.

Braley highlighted the case of Michael and Erin Peat of Dubuque, who are still waiting on an exit visa from the Congolese government to bring home their two children.  

“I was overwhelmed with the amount of support my office received from Iowans on this issue,” Braley said. “I’m going to make sure that Secretary Kerry knows that the people of Iowa care deeply about this issue and we aren’t going to let up until the Peats and hundreds of other families like them are able to bring their rightfully adopted children home.”

“No child should be denied a loving home because of bureaucratic paperwork,” the letter reads.

Last month, the State Department announced that the Congolese government would issue a total of 62 ‘exit letters’—15 of which would be issued to American families—but the overwhelming majority of U.S. families have received no update from the Congolese government and their adoptions remain in limbo.

Approximately 460 families have had their adoptions suspended, but the Peats are one of only about 50 families that have had it occur at such a late stage in the process. They were granted their adoption visa by the United States. However, the DRC suddenly refused to issue exit letters, which is the final step allowing families to bring their children to the United States.  

Braley has written the Congolese Prime Minister, the Congolese Ambassador to the United States, and Secretary of State John Kerry calling for a resolution to this issue.

The letter to Secretary can be found HERE.

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