§ Mr. Gale
To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he proposes to lay an order under section 57(8) of the Adoption Act 1976 to enable adoption agencies to continue to operate adoption allowance schemes approved by him beyond 15 February 1989, when the experimental period introduced in 1982 under section 32 of the Children Act 1975 will end.
§ Mr. Mellor
We have published, in accordance with the requirements of section 57(6) of the Adoption Act 1976, a report of a research project commissioned by the Department from the National Children's Bureau into the operation of adoption allowance schemes in England and Wales. The research findings show that adoption allowance schemes have succeeded in their objective of enabling adoption agencies to find suitable adoptive families for children who could not otherwise enjoy the benefits and security of adoption. We intend, therefore, to lay an order under section 57(8) which, subject to the agreement of both Houses, allows adoption agencies to continue to submit schemes for approval by the Secretary of State and to operate approved schemes.