SALT LAKE CITY - The social services arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints says it will no longer operate a full-service adoption agency, but will shift resources toward adoption-related counseling.
The change, announced last week, would provide would-be parents with more opportunities to adopt.
David McConkie, who manages the organization's services for children, tells The Salt Lake Tribune the traditional adoption agency model wasn't working for LDS Family Services.
He said fewer women are putting their children up for adoption these days, likely because the stigma of being an unwed mother has subsided.
Family Services has been placing 200 to 300 children per year, down from a peak of 665 in 2002.
Officials tell KSL the decision isn't driven by pressure to facilitate adoptions for same-sex couples.
"Our goal is first, to provide more opportunities to adopt, and second, to offer a broader array of resources to unwed parents," said McConkie.
About 600 couples in the process of adopting with the agency will be able to complete their adoptions or start again under the new model.