History

1910s

• 1914 (Stockholm): World’s YWCA resolves to study hardships of immigration
• 1914 Outbreak of WWI, resolution delayed

1920s – An evidence based beginning to an international network

• 1920 (Switzerland) Standing Migration Committee formed to handle WWI displaced persons

• 1921 “The Welfare of Migrants” report published for International Emigration Commission of the ILO and widely circulated

• 1924 International Headquarters of International Migration Service (now ISS) established in Geneva, incorporated in NYC in 1926
• 1924: U.S. Quota Act of 1924 comes into effect

• 1928 Great Depression Hits

1930s – Socio-Legal Cooperation

• ISS instrumental in aiding immigrants through the depression
• Studies lead to ISS mission of ‘socio-legal’ cooperation

• 1939 Find homes for WWII refugee children

1940’s A New Name, Same Best Practices

• Over 3500 British children placed in temporary U.S. homes
• Over 100,000 refugees resettled
• 1946 Name changed from International Migration Service to International Social Service

1950s – The beginnings of Intercountry Adoption: A Child Centered Approach

• Family finding begins for the illegitimate children of U.S. service men
• ISS studies of the effects of intercountry adoption begin
• 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees passed with ISS assistance.
• ISS develops procedures to assist with 1953 Refugee Relief Act
• 1955: US government grants first subsidy to ISS as a part of the orphan adoption program

1960s : Building capacity and cooperating globally


• Medical social work unit added

• Strong participation in U.N. committees

• Assisted DOS and the Children’s Bureau in the recruitment and training of international caseworkers.

1970s – Changing Refugee Resettlement practices and policies

• Created impetus to develop a Task Force on Unaccompanied Refugee Minors.

1980s –Expanding the International Network

• ISS increases their role in U.S. & international child welfare organizations
• Advisory roles include State Department Advisory Committee on the Inter-American Convention on Adoption
• 1989 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

1990s-The Hague Takes Center Stage
• 1993 Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry

Adoption
• 1994 U.S. signs the Hague Adoption
• ISS-US instrumental in understanding and carrying out Convention
• 1994 ISS-USA becomes part of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service

2000s-The Mission Remains the Same
• 2004 ISS-USA reestablished as an independent agency
• Network of agencies in ? countries

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