FAQ: Can a white family adopt a Black child?

Compiled by Robyn Wolfson Vorster

Yes, transracial adoption is permitted in the Children’s Act. 

However, the Department of Social Development prioritises placement of children in same race and preferably same-ethnicity families.  For this reason, children are placed on the Register for Adoptable Children and Parents (RACAP) for a 30 day period waiting for a same race placement.  It is only if a same race family is not found in that 30 day period that a black child can be placed in a white family. 

The reason that transracial adoption of black children into white families is common is because there are more black children than black families on the register.

In addition, there are a very small number of white children available for adoption, and more white adoptive parents than children.

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