Overall number of adoptions down by a quarter since 2012


The number of children adopted in the Czech Republic has dropped by about a quarter over the past five years, Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs data show. Yet in the Czech Republic, more than 20,000 children are in residential care, including those not up for adoption, one of the highest per capita rates in Europe.

In 2012, 729 applications for adoptions were submitted and 526 children found new homes. In 2016, the number of applications dropped to 540 and only 377 children were adopted, and the downward trend has continued.

The Office of the Ombudsman has been looking into cases of would-be parents who have waited for years to adopt a child. Under current Czech rules, unmarried couples and partners are not eligible to adopt jointly, which the Office considers a possible violation of human rights.