McCaskill Talks International Adoption Issues With Heroine Of Oscar-Nominated Film

CBS St. Louis

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill today met with Philomena Lee to discuss Irish adoption laws and Philomena’s work to reunite American children separated from their Irish families through forced adoption. The story of Philomena’s decades-long search for the son who was forcibly adopted and raised by a family in St. Louis, Mo., is the subject of a recent book and Oscar-nominated film.

“Philomena’s story is heart-wrenching, and she has one of the most just causes you could possibly have—the simple premise that if a child is taken from a mother against her will, there should be an easy way to reconnect with that child,” McCaskill said. “Unfortunately in Ireland, for many years there was a repugnant practice of children taken from their young mothers, put in a home, and when the child got a certain age, shipped off to America to new parents. I have a blended family of seven children. All of my husband’s children from his first marriage are adopted, and we are fortunate in that his oldest son has reconnected with his birthmother—we know and socialize with her, and they have a wonderful relationship. So I know firsthand how important it is to keep those doors open and to allow the transparency and availability of adoption records so that children and parents can have the opportunity to reunite when it is their life’s wish.”

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