FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — After several local Marshallese mothers are blindly swept up in a black market baby scheme, a local attorney is in Little Rock pushing for state lawmakers to change Arkansas’ adoption laws.
Local attorney Josh Bryant is in Little Rock, sharing a study about the loopholes in Arkansas adoptions.
The study was scheduled on the calendar already, but it’s even more pressing now that an alleged adoption scheme by Arizona attorney Paul Petersen was uncovered.
Bryant says that adoption has become human trafficking in vulnerable communities in Arkansas, including the sizeable Marshallese population in the northwest part of the state.
Justin Heimer is also a local adoption attorney in Northwest Arkansas. He says there are good laws in place for adoptions in the state, but beginning the discussion about how to improve loopholes would be good for expectant mothers and adopting families.
“Josh Bryant has worked really hard on this law, and I am a fan of the work he is doing. I’d like to see all of us, all of the adoption attorneys in the state, most of which have spoken to each other about this, kind of work together to go 'Wait we're the ones who understand this code. How can we work together to clean up areas where it doesn’t quite make sense, where it might contradict itself, where it might leave too much grey area, and still preserve it?',” Heimer said.