Conference Contribution Details
Mandatory Fields
Parkes A;
Early Childhood in Developing World Contexts-An International Conference
The aim of the conference is to deepen understanding of children¿s lives in developing country contexts, drawing attention to early childhood development in the majority world and the importance of including local traditions, culture and knowledge in professional practice
Oral Presentation
Optional Fields

On 1st November, 2010 Ireland witnessed a sea-change in its adoption legislation for the first time in 50 years. This presented a golden opportunity for the Irish Government to address many of the inadequacies which have been long been associated with what has been regarded as an outdated piece of legislation. In short, this Act aims to achieve three main objectives: the consolidation of the six amending pieces of legislation subsequent to the enactment of Adoption Act 1952, the formal establishment of the Adoption Authority and most importantly, the ratification of the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Inter-country Adoption.


This socio-legal paper will not only identify some of the shortfalls of the new Act but will also undertake a comparative analysis with the UK experience. This paper will pose some critical questions in relation to the perceived inadequacies of the recently adopted legislation. Some key issues which will be explored include: the lack of statutory provision for a right to information; the blatant failure to take into account the extensive national and international adoption research; the lost opportunity to strengthen the position of unmarried fathers and the clear lack of recognition afforded to same-sex couples. Indeed, one of the most pertinent questions that will be asked is whether the Act truly prioritises the best interests of the child. Furthermore, another consideration is the anticipated effect of the proposed constitutional amendment on the rights of the child on all of these issues.