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Adopted Children and Stepchildren: 2000

Report Number CENSR-6RV
Rose M. Kreider


Although many data sources describe the living arrangements and characteristics of children in general, few are large enough to permit the analysis of children by whether they are the biological, adopted, or stepchildren of the householder. Census 2000 included “adopted son/daughter” for the first time in the decennial census as a category of relationship to the householder separate from “natural born son/daughter” and “stepson/stepdaughter”. The adoption category includes various types of adoption, such as: adoption of biologically related and unrelated children, adoption of stepchildren, adoption through private and public agencies, domestic and international adoptions, and independent and informal adoptions. Census 2000 is the principal source of data on adopted children and their families on a national level. See the Other Sources of Data and Data Quality sections of this report for more information about national level data on adopted children and stepchildren. 

This report presents information on the characteristics of the 2.1 million adopted children and 4.4 million stepchildren of householders as estimated from the Census 2000 sample, which collected data from approximately 1 out of every 6 households. Together, these children represented approximately 8 percent of the 84 million sons and daughters of householders in 2000.

Table 1. Selected Characteristics of Children of the Householder by Type of Relationship and Sex of Child for the United States: 2000

Table 2. Percent Distribution of Selected Characteristics of Children of the Householder, by Type of Relationship and Sex of Child for the United States: 2000

Table 3. Percent of Adopted Children of the Householder Who Are Foreign Born, by Age, for the United States, Regions, States, and for Puerto Rico: 2000

Release date: October 9, 2003


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