07 Jun 2011

The Author

Author of the award-winning book Finding Fernanda. Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism. Redux Pictures photographer. Read more here.


DCF Moves to Close Florida Adoption Agency


Florida DCF has moved to shut down a Florida adoption agency, Adoption by Shepherd Care. They say, according to a new article by Megan O’Matz in the Florida Sun-Sentinel, that one of the reasons is “pressuring a birth mother into giving up her infant twin sons.” The Sun-Sentinel obtained records about the adoption agency from Florida DCF (which I would assume were probably handed over via Freedom of Information Act request!)

O’Matz’s piece quotes DCF department spokesman Mark Riordan saying, “DCF isn’t going to tolerate coercive behavior by these agencies, ever.”

The agency Adoption by Shepherd Care (ASC) works in both domestic and international adoption, and has been around since 1980, according to their website. Based in Hollywood, ASC is a non-profit Christian agency, and also advertises children on Precious.org. ASC’s international adoption program, according to their website, consists solely of a Colombia adoption program– but the Sun-Sentinel article says they also used to work in other countries, including Guatemala.

The agency’s Facebook page hasn’t mentioned anything about DCF’s move.

Here’s the full story in the Sun-Sentinel: http://www.sun-sentinel.com/fl-shepherd-care-adoption-20110529,0,5348651.story

UPDATE 9/1/2011: I have filed another public records request to see what happened with this investigation.

UPDATE 9/24/2011: Nothing back from DCF yet, although the Florida Sun Sentinel published a new story that says Adoptions by Shepherd Care will remain open. Here’s an excerpt:

“State regulators have backed off efforts to close a Hollywood-based adoption agency but imposed stringent conditions that Adoption by Shepherd Care must meet to stay open.

The adoption agency also must pay a $10,000 fine, according to the settlement agreement it signed last month with Florida’s Department of Children & Families.

“We were willing to give them, literally, one more chance,” said DCF spokesman Mark Riordan.

The agency contends that it proved to DCF administrators that the state’s case against it was flawed and without merit….”

Full link to the article: http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/broward/hollywood/fl-shepherd-care-adoption-dcf-20110924,0,5440483,full.story 





  1. I await to see the results of this ‘shut down’ as Florida has a dismal track record. The fact that CCI continues to operate even with countless complaints is evidence of problems in Florida!

  2. I would like to clarify that Adoption By Shepherd Care has resolved any and ALL of the false allegations which the agency has been falsely accussed of. ASC maintains COA, Hague, ICBF, and DCF highest accrediations. After all evidence was presented all entitiies who govern the agency has maintained that the agency has been found to of ‘no wrond doing’. I would also like to clarify that the agency has never had a Guatemalean Program. We are an incoming and out going dually accreditted agency. We only work work with Canada and Colombia.

  3. I have workered with this agency for many years. I currently do not work for them but I can state that this agency is both competent and compassionate which is very hard to find in this day and age of International Adoptions. I highly recommend this agency to anyone seeking to adopt Domestically or from Colombia.

  4. We worked with ASC to bring home our daughter. ASC was wonderful to work with, very informative, helpful, always there to listen and guide us, was very up-front regarding all of our daughters issues. We had the most dealing with the Orlando office and became very fond of the office staff. You couldn’t ask for a better agency.

  5. I’m glad DCF is investigating this agency. I believe that they are operating under false pretenses, taking unnecessary risks, and slandering the name of Jesus Christ in their corrupt practices. They are in over their heads and suffer groupthink in an enmeshed dysfunction under Nidia Sicas lead.

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