February 08, 2010

PGN Outs - In the Next 6 Weeks????

A story ran in the Prensa Libre on Friday about adoptions (and how illegal ones still exist). Within the story, PGN says that as a result of aprocess with the CNA aimed at verifying the validity of documents, the in-process, grandfathered cases at PGN will be released in the next six weeks.

Some words of caution: (1) it doesn't say all will be approved (2) it speaks of the cases with no legal issues - whatever that means (3) does not include those cases that have to go through CNA/the new law (4) PGN doesn't always deliver on its promises...

Nonetheless, for those waiting in PGN it can't be viewed as bad news!!!

The story can be found here or click on more for a translation..
http://www.prensalibre.com/pl/2010/febrero/06/373653.html

Processing of Applications
La PGN y el CNA mantienen en estudio más de 200 peticiones de adopción. The PGN and the CNA study held in more than 200 requests for adoption.
• La PGN ha tramitado dos mil 700 expedientes que quedaron tras la entrada en vigor de la nueva Ley de Adopciones. • The PGN has processed two thousand 700 cases that remained after the entry into force of the new Adoption Act.
• Ahora, efectúa el trámite de 175 a 200 solicitudes, las cuales se liberarán en un plazo de mes y medio. • Now, there are in- process cases: from 175 to 200 applications, which will be released within a month and a half.
• El Consejo Nacional de Adopciones ha autorizado 312 desde su creación en febrero del 2008. • The National Adoption Council has authorized 312 since its inception in February 2008.
• En ese año autorizó 52 adopciones; 241, durante el 2009, y 19, en enero recién pasado. • In that year they approved 52 adoptions, 241 in 2009, and 19, in January just past.


There remains illegal adoption business?
BY G. CONTRERASY S. CONTRERASY S. VALDEZ VALDEZ

Pese a que desde enero del 2008 entró en vigor un nuevo procedimiento con mayores controles, continúan las denuncias por negocios con niños para adopciones ilegales. Although since January 2008 came into force a new procedure with greater controls, business continued reports in children for illegal adoptions.
Guillermo Porras, procurador general de la Nación, reveló ayer que desde Estados Unidos ha recibido varias quejas de que hay notarios que todavía lucran con el trámite de adopción. Guillermo Porras, Attorney General's Office revealed yesterday that since the U.S. has received several complaints that there are still lawyers who profit from the adoption process.
“Ya le hice saber a nuestros consulados que no nos va a temblar la mano para procesar a estos notarios que estén incurriendo en estas ilegalidades”, expresó Porras. "I let him know to our consulates that is not going to shake his hand to prosecute these lawyers who are engaging in these illegal actions," said Porras.
La nueva Ley de Adopciones, que regula los procedimientos y endurece los controles en dicha materia, entró en vigor en enero del 2008 para erradicar los trámites ilegales y la negociación con niños. The new Adoption Act, which regulates the procedures and tighten controls in this matter, entered into force in January 2008 to eradicate illegal and negotiation procedures with children.
El procurador no quiso ofrecer detalles, por tratarse de casos que están en investigación, pero adelantó que habrá resultados en unos 10 ó 15 días. The attorney declined to give details, include cases that are under investigation, but said it will result in about 10 or 15 days.
“Tengo un caso concreto, pero ¿cuánta gente habrá atrás? "I have a case, but how many people will be back? Lo que sí es que ya tengo nombres”, dijo. What is that I already have names, "he said.
Personas desconfían People distrust
Elizabeth de Larios, presidenta de la directiva del Consejo Nacional de Adopciones (CNA), coincidió con lo revelado por Porras y refirió que a las personas se les inculca desconfianza. Elizabeth de Larios, president of the board of National Adoption Council (CNA), coincided with what is revealed by Porras and reported that people are inculcated distrust.
“Lamentablemente, la gente tiene desconfianza porque los notarios les han hecho creer que si van al Consejo se les va a quitar a los niños”, explicó. "Unfortunately, people have confidence because they have notaries believe that if they go to the Council were going to remove the children," he said.
Porras no descarta que se trate de una organización. Porras did not rule out the case of an organization. “Espero que sea una red, para desarticularla”, afirmó. "I hope it's a network, to dismantle" he said.
Se cumple plazo Met deadline
La Procuraduría General de la Nación (PGN) se encuentra a mes y medio de desligarse de la evaluación y tramitación de documentación de adopciones que quedaron pendientes con la anterior ley. The Attorney General's Office (PGN) is a month and a half separated from the evaluation and documentation processing adoptions that were pending with the former law.
De 175 a 200 expedientes quedan pendientes, y en ese período se calcula que serán evacuadas. From 175 to 200 cases are pending, and has been forecasted to be evacuated.
Para ello, la PGN y el CNA establecieron una comisión para analizar la viabilidad y la verificación de los documentos, tramitados antes de la vigencia de la nueva ley. For this, the PGN and the ANC established a commission to study the feasibility and verification of documents processed before the effective date of the new law.
Al respecto, el presidente Álvaro Colom afirmó que con la estrenada legislación terminó el “mercado de los niños”. In this regard, President Alvaro Colom said that with the premiere law ended the "marketplace of children."
Tragedy

Quieren adoptar haitianos? They want to adopt Haitians?
El Consejo Nacional de Adopciones (CNA) ha recibido al menos 50 solicitudes de guatemaltecos interesados en adoptar a niños haitianos. The National Adoption Council (CNA) has received at least 50 requests interested in adopting a Haitian children.
Por medio de correo electrónico fueron enviadas 20 solicitudes y otras 30 presentdas por teléfono, informó Rudy Zepeda, vocero del CNA. Through e-mail was sent 20 applications and 30 presentdas by telephone, said Rudy Zepeda, spokesperson for the ANC.

Sin embargo, la respuesta para los interesados fue que Guatemala aún no lleva a cabo adopciones internacionales, y aunque ya estuviera en el proceso no puede hacer ese tipo de trámites, porque Haití no está adscrito a La Convención de La Haya. However, the response to those concerned that Guatemala was not even done international adoptions, and though he was in the process can not make such arrangements, because Haiti is not attached to the Hague Convention.

Además, esta recomienda que para iniciar un proceso de adopción, primero deben ser agotados todos los intentos porque el niño se quede con su familia en el país de origen. Moreover, this recommends that to begin an adoption process must first be exhausted all attempts for the child to stay with his family in the country of origin.

Añadió que La Haya le hizo saber al CNA su apoyo y cooperación para el proyecto piloto que llevan a cabo en materia de adopciones internacionales. He added that The Hague informed the CNA will support and cooperation for the pilot project carried out in international adoptions.

Posted by Kevin at 08:28 AM

November 25, 2008

Contacting CNA

It is a horrible thing that there are so many families still stuck and moreso that many of their agencies and attorneys aren't doing much about it. From everything I had heard, it is 100% ESSENTIAL that someone work closely and cooperate with the CNA in order to try to resolve and complete in-process adoptions where the birthmmother interview was not completed.

Realizing that this is the case, Guatadopt had been able to facilitate some of this communication for PAPs. Due to a number of reasons we are not able to continue that. But if you are in this boat, you should find a way to contact the CNA. If you don't speak/write Spanish, get creative!!! Ask a server at a restaurant, a high school Spanish teacher, etc. Needless to say, there are bilingual people in every corner of this country. The point is that CNA needs to know that you are dedicated to this child and adoption.

There are two ways you can contact CNA:

1.) Via their website:http://www.cna.gob.gt/contactenos.html
2.) Via e-mail: jtecu@cna.gob.gt

Posted by Kevin at 05:12 PM

October 14, 2008

PGN Update

The news that the system is down is true, they have been without internet in the second floor for 20 days!!! Lightning struck and burned the internet antenna and they are waiting for the parts to get to Guate. They tried using another service and are in the process of seeing if they can transfer all the files through this service. It would probably take another few days to get it running...Sad.

HOWEVER...They have continued working on the physical files so the OUTS are ready (as well as the previos), so PAPs should expect an avalanche of news once the PGN internet system is up. The PGN secretary's words are that "the stacks of files are ready and people can find out their status in person but the system is not up so we cannot transfer the information downstairs".

Very frustrating because, yes this time it is a valid excuse, but it doesn't help at all particularly knowing how some of them do drag their feet on a regular basis. Like any beaurocracy, some folks are sharp and some are clueless. Anyways, we have been reassured from our sources that the files that are ready, are just waiting for the system to be back on so that they can enter the data and release those files.
Marie, Guatadopt.com

Posted by Marie at 02:24 PM

August 23, 2008

B-Mom Interviews - PGN Open Next Weekend

Guatadopt has learned that PGN will stay open next weekend from 8-4 to help get interviews completed. As we have stated before, everyone needs to push their attorneys to bring the birthmoms in to avoid problems.

Posted by Kevin at 09:11 AM

May 30, 2008

Cases were released today!

Some cases were released from PGN today. Some came out with Previos and some were Approvals. We have not verified how many at this time.

Added: Around 50 released. 10 were approved, the rest had Previos. While not great news, remember that paperwork is not necessarily tied with birthmother intent. Let's hope that these are minor issues and can be resolved quickly.

Posted by Kelly at 03:23 PM

May 29, 2008

Will PGN be releasing cases today or tomorrow?

Yes....at least that is what they are *planning*. There are nearly 300 cases that are ready to be released. But probably only 100 will see the door this week that have passed the birthmother interview. We're hoping today or tomorrow we'll hear some good news.

Birthmother interviews: As we have said before, we have no way of verifying EXACTLY what has been said in some interviews. However, US authorities have been meeting with PGN and have been seen around the building. We know of several organizations that have formally or informally requested that PGN ensure that the interviews are respectful of the birthmother's rights not only as the biological mother, but as a person who is making a difficult decision for the future of her child.

In the meantime, there is still the question of WHY some children have been removed and whether the sited reasons justify the PGN's actions. Reports to the Prospective Adoptive Parents have classified them as "insignificant" or "clerical". Unfortunately, the speculation and rumors have muddied the waters. We HOPE there is no alterior motives behind these removals other than a legitimate fear that the birthmother has not been adequately represented. Instead of us making that call, we will just focus our energies on requesting that PGN REALIZE the trauma invoked on these children and their prospective parents!!!

As this is a difficult time for everyone, we ask that NO comments are posted unless it is SPECIFICLY what you were told about YOUR case. Please see the comment rules by clicking on the questionmark next to "comments" below this post.

Posted by Kelly at 06:46 AM

May 16, 2008

PGN Payments to Birthmoms???

I'll begin by saying we still don't know for sure what is happening...

We do have it, as so many of you have read, from a trustworthy adoption agency that two birthmoms were offered money from PGN to reclaim their children. One was apparently offered a lump sum, one a monthly stipend. We have no reason to doubt the validity of that report, or moreso what their attorney, whom they absolute faith in, reported.

With that said, there are still many unanswered questions and everyone I have spoken to, including this agency, finds it hard to believe that PGN is in fact doing this.

What we don't have are reports of this being widespead or uniform. Why would they only make such an offer to a couple of women? There have been no media reports. Why wouldn't the government be proud to annouce a social program aimed at family unification?

My GUESS, and it is truly speculative, is that there is some "logical" explanation that does not negate this attorney's report, but also falls short of some new widespread plan to get women to reclaim their kids. For example, and this is purely trying to imagine an explanation, was this was the work of one overzelous interviewer. Might his machisimo have taken over? Might he have asked the birthmother if she had received any support for relinquishment, which is not illegal, and she replied that she had. Might he have asked her, "well then what would it take to get you to keep your child? Would 500Q a month do it?" MIght this have been a line of COMPLETELY INAPPROPRIATE questioning as opposed to a serious offer? Might the birthmom have not understood the sickening sarcasm?

If my SPECULATION is correct I truly hope that this person is severly reprimanded, removed from future interviews, and fired. Needless to say, such a thing would be cruel to the birthmother and not in line with what the overall reports of the interview process have been.

While obviously on the surface I completely support the creation of social programs aimed at supporting mothers in need, this certainly would not be the place to start. Far better that such funds be used to address children currently at risk of malnutrition, abandonment, and the other sad woes that are part of everyday reality in Guatemala.

We tried very hard today to learn more on this but quite frankly, everyone is baffled. As we are able to gather more information we will post it.

Posted by Kevin at 10:11 PM

May 09, 2008

Update on Interviews

What I have heard is that knock on wood, some of the cases where the interview took place will be released next week. I hope this occurs as a good faith show that no one is trying to prevent the cases from being completed. So come on PGN - release those files!

All 25 cases interviewed yesterday went fine. Of course, there were more who had been called and obviously no one is going to show up if, for example, the child had been kept from a birthmom who wanted to reclaim in the past. I am not saying that has happened. I'm just saying that this process will likely result in many cases getting cleared and questions on others.

I also learned that if an attorney can't make the appointment date, they need to go to PGN to reschedule. In short, just doing a no show doesn't look good. So if the assigned date for the interview doesn't work for the birthmom or they are trying to find her, they should go, set a date, or communicate with PGN.

Rumor, nothing official, is that all reinquishment cases will be called for an interview. Some 100 more interview requests went out today. More interviews did occur today and I am not sure how many that was.

On the press yesterday.... Obviously, it is wrong for them to take pictures of unwilling birthmoms. They were not allowed on the floor where the interviews were taking place except for before and after the interviewing occurred. They did, unfortunately, have the ability to take pictures of people as they entered and left the building. I don't know if this can be legally prevented and would urge the media to use proper judgement.

Some abandonment cases were called in yesterday. Obviously no birthmom can be present but a representative from the children's home stood in. I don't know the purpose of this unless it is to document/validate who is caring for the child and that it is the same child on the CNA registration.

Some have requested me to create a campaign. I am lacking on time and am not sure I agree with the need for one. As I've written, I am really torn right now. I want all legitimate adoptions completed ASAP. I think that the legality of these interviews is something for the courts to decide. If it is illegal, then an amparo should be filed and ruled on. But from what I know and am hearing, not being a lawyer or expert on this, that ruling could go either way.

My OPINION is that we should see if the cases where interviews have been conducted get released before intervening in domestic affairs of a sovereign state. But as I have written many times before, we happily post information on most campaigns PAPs create. Back in 2003, before I wrote for this site, I and others did do the work and asked Kelly to post it. Guatadopt has rarely if ever been the organizer,it has been the communicator.

A NOTE: someone yesterday in the comments posted a You Tube link. THAT WAS NOT FOOTAGE FROM YESTERDAY. It was months old.

Posted by Kevin at 05:46 PM

September 29, 2006

THE EXECUTIVE ORDERS ARE NO LONGER A THREAT

{Posted on behalf of Susana Luarca, Asociacion Defensores de la Adopcion}

President Oscar Berger withdraw the executive orders that he planned to approve this weekend "to celebrate the Children’s Day" , October 1st. The abuse of power that he intended to do by-passing the Congress to pass the Protocol of Good Practices , which is the same UNICEF law of adoptions, and reinstate the Hague Convention, was halted by the same Congress, who warned him of the consequences of usurping the legislative power.

That Berger denied to the DOS that his intentions were to suspend adoptions and take them over by his wife who directs the Secretary of Social Welfare, was expected. He also lied when he said to the press, that Kofi Annan, General Secretary of the United Nations “told him that if Venezuela gets a seat in the Security Council, there will be trouble”. Annan denies having said that to Berger.

The positive part of this experience is to see that the legal system works and that we are working under the protection of the law. The rights granted by the Constitution to the mothers to relinquish their children, to the children to be adopted and to the lawyers to work on adoptions cannot be taken away, by any law or international treaty, not even by the President of Guatemala.

The next step will be to set the record straight with the people at the PGN. We have waited too long to hold them accountable for all their delays, their rejections without legal grounds and their abuses of power. The thorough review of the adoption files is their duty, to verify the legality of the process. But when the files are rejected for no reason or when the review takes not the three days that they should take, but more than a month if they are rejected and much more if they are approved , it is time to make use of the legal actions that the law supplies for cases like these and file criminal charges against them. The worst enemy of an abandoned child is time. The time that a child spends without the love of a family, hurts the child in more ways that we can think of. If the PGN does not care for the children, we have to make them to care. If we don’t do it, we will be as guilty as them.


Best regards,
Susana Luarca
Asociacion Defensores de la Adopcion

Posted by Kelly at 01:38 PM

August 10, 2006

PGN Moving

It looks like things are starting to move in PGN. Many cases were released yesterday and it appears as though the director has gotten a lawyer to help him review the cases (per Susana Luarca's comments on a different Guatadopt thread).

Here's to hoping it keeps up!

Posted by Kevin at 01:09 PM

July 31, 2006

Another PGN Meeting

Another meeting is being held today. This time it is with key representatives of the ADA, inlcuding its president, Enrique Urizar. They are meeting with the head of PGN, not the head of the adoptions unit that signs off on all cases. I will post more once I know it.

UPDATE: The meeting did occur. PGN gave the same reasons for delays about being understaffed, increase in the number of cases, etc. They did, however, promise that they would be "caught up" within 15 days. While that sounds optimistic, I want caution parents about laying too much faith on this promise. Hope it's true but don't count on it. We'll all see what happens in the next 3 weeks (I assume 15 days is 15 working days).

Fingers are crossed.

Posted by Kevin at 01:04 PM

July 30, 2006

Embassy Meeting with PGN

I did just receive confirmation that little was accomplished when the US Embassy met with PGN. PGN claims it is understaffed and overloaded with cases. The one promising thing is that PGN did say they would start issuing all previos at once so that families don't get KOd numerous times. But I would be cautious about believing that because it has been promised many times in that past.

Wish it was better news I was delivering.

Posted by Kevin at 12:08 AM