- Parents Mil and Dianna Wallen and film director Sarah McCarthy join together for campaign to free 300+ children stuck in limbo after Russian authorities signed law earlier this year banning American families from adopting Russian children;
- Mil and Dianna Wallen were in the process of adopting their son, Max, when the law was signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin;
- McCarthy’s new film, The Dark Matter of Love, profiles three of the last children to be adopted into America before the Russian ban was put in place. Her film will premiere at the Moscow Film Festival later this month to raise awareness about American families trying to adopt Russian children.
Two American parents, Mil and Dianna Wallen, have launched a Change.org petition urging the Russian government to allow them to complete the adoption of their teenage son Max. The Wallens, who live in Woodstock, Virginia, were in the process of adopting Max when Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law that bans the adoption of Russian children by U.S. families.
Max is now one of more than 300 kids stuck in limbo after having met their adoptive families from the U.S., only to be denied the chance to complete the adoption process by this new Russian law.
More than 63,000 have signed the Wallen’s petition on Change.org.
“We miss Max terribly every day. Our son is now stuck on the other side of the world because of this new law,” said Mil and Dianna Wallen. “But it’s not just our son. More than 300 children, many with severe health problems, are currently stuck in orphanages in Russia. These children have adoptive families whom they have met and started to fall in love with, waiting for them in America.”
The Wallens have joined with documentary filmmaker Sarah McCarthy, whose latest film, “The Dark Matter of Love,” tells the story of the last three Russian children able to be adopted in the United States. McCarthy is using her film to raise awareness of the plight of the approximately 300 Russian children who are now being prevented from finalizing their adoption by U.S. families.
Her film will screen at the Moscow Film Festival later this month. Also this month, U.S. President Obama is scheduled to meet with President Putin, and McCarthy is hoping Obama will urge Putin to allow these 300 children to complete the adoption process and be allowed to travel to the U.S.
Until President Putin signed the law banning American families from adopting Russian children, Russia was the third most popular country for American families looking to adopt abroad. The U.S. State Department, meanwhile, has condemned Russia’s ban on American adoptive families as “politically motivated” and said that they “hope that the Russian government would allow those children who have already met and bonded with their future parents to finish the necessary legal procedures so that they can join their families.”
Senator Mary Landrieu (D-Lousiana) will publish a letter to President Obama with over 170 signatures from Members of Congress, urging President Obama to raise the issue with President Putin later this month during his visit to Russia, and request the lives of these children be prioritized over political issues.
For Mil and Dianna Wallen, they plan to continue speaking out about their fight to bring their son Max home, as well as the 300 other Russian children who have met their American adopted families, only to be blocked by Russian law from completing the adoption process.
“We always end our conversations with Max with ‘I love you to the moon and back,’ and Maxim tells us he loves us ‘to the moon and back,’” said Mil and Dianna. “We will fight to be Max’s parents, just as many other U.S. parents want to give a home to the over 300 Russian kids punished and penalized because of this new law.
Live signature totals from Mil and Dianna Wallen’s Change.org petition can be viewed here:
For more information on The Dark Matter of Love, visit:
To view the U.S. State Department’s condemnation of Russia’s adoption law:
For more information on Change.org, please visit:
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