Focus on Forever Families at Michigan Adoption Day Nov. 24

With the theme of "Giving Thanks for Families," courts statewide will celebrate Adoption Day on Tuesday, Nov. 24. Held on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving each year, Adoption Day has become holiday tradition, highlighting the importance of adoption and the needs of children in foster care. Many courts will finalize adoptions while others will hold informational events to reach potential adoptive parents. Click here for a list of events statewide.

Chief Justice Robert P. Young, Jr. said Michigan Adoption Day is aimed at raising awareness and encouraging potential adoptive and foster parents to step forward. Young noted that, while adoption finalization hearings are usually private, many participating courts will open their hearings to the public.

"Adoption Day gives the public a window into the adoption process," Young said. "This is a celebration of adoption, but our purpose is to educate the public about the rewards of being an adoptive parent. Every child deserves a loving, forever home."

On Tuesday Nov. 24 at 10 a.m. in the Supreme Court courtroom in Lansing, Chief Justice Young and Justice Bridget M. McCormack will join Washtenaw Circuit Judge Timothy Connors and Tribal Judge Michael Petoskey in finalizing adoptions for families from Washtenaw County.

Justice Stephen J. Markman, Justice David F. Viviano, Justice Joan L. Larsen, and Court of Appeals Chief Judge Michael Talbot will also lend a hand as judges in more than 30 courtrooms around the state create forever homes for about 100 children:

Justice Markman

Jackson County, November 20 - 9 a.m. (note different date), Jackson Co. Bldg. 312 S. Jackson St., Jackson

Cass County, November 24 -2 p.m., Cass County Courthouse, 60296 M-62, Cassopolis

Justice Viviano

Macomb County, November 24 - 9 a.m., Macomb County Courthouse, 40 N. Main St., Mt. Clemens

Wayne County, November 24 - 10:30, Coleman A. Young Municipal Ctr., 2 Woodward Ave., Detroit

Justice Larsen

Oakland County, November 24 - 9 a.m., 1200 N. Telegraph, Pontiac

Court of Appeals Chief Judge Michael Talbot

Kalamazoo County, November 24 - 10 a.m. Kalamazoo County Courthouse, 1400 Gull Road, Kalamazoo

Michigan Adoption Day is co-sponsored by the Michigan Supreme Court, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the Child Welfare Services division of the State Court Administrative Office, and Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange (MARE).

"Michigan is committed to responding to the needs of adoptive families and understands the value in providing post-adoption services to families; post-adoption services are available statewide through eight resource centers" DHHS Director Nick Lyon said. "The state continues to make significant progress in finding forever homes for our state's most vulnerable youth."

Anyone interested in adopting a child may contact MARE at 3840 Packard Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48108. MARE can be also reached Monday Friday 8:30 a.m. 5 p.m. at (800) 589-6273 (in Michigan), via fax at (734) 528-1695, or through the MARE website.

The ceremony in the Supreme Court courtroom on Nov. 24 will also include the presentation of the Daniel J. Wright Lifetime Achievement Award. Jointly sponsored by the Michigan Supreme Court and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the award was established in honor of the late Daniel J. Wright of Grand Ledge. As director of the Friend of the Court Bureau and Child Welfare Services divisions of the State Court Administrative Office, Wright helped create the state's "Adoption Forums" to deal with adoption barriers that were stranding children in foster care. He worked on legislation to give foster children a greater voice in decisions about their lives. The law now requires courts to consult the child when holding a hearing about permanent home placement.

Published: Wed, Nov 18, 2015