Adoption has, in some form, a very long heritage. With a playful merging of the old with the new Triseliotis and colleagues (1997, p. 3) note that the first recorded adoption in Western literature is that of Moses, ‘a transcultural and possibly transracial adoption in which an infant of a subjugated people was adopted by a woman of the ruling class – possibly a single parent.’ However, as a legal remedy which invests parental rights in adults who are not the biological parents of the child, it is a relatively recent phenomenon dating to the mid-nineteenth century in the USA and to 1926 in English law (1930 in Scotland). In the UK bestowing parental responsibilities (PR) on adoptive parents for a child adopted from care can only be achieved by removing them from the child’s birth parents, although since the Adoption and Children Act 2002 a step-parent can now in England and Wales apply to become the parent of a child without removing the parenting rights of one of the biological parents.
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