On September 17, 2009, the State Department Issued an Alert informing of the suspension of adoptions in Sierra Leone. The Government of Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender and Children's Affairs suspended adoptions on May 29, 2009 due to concerns on the legality of adoptions and the welfare of adoptees. An interagency committee has been established by the Ministry to work on new adoption laws and procedures. The U.S. Embassy has been informed that the committee hopes to present a new bill to Parliament for a vote this calendar year. The Ministry has indicated that no adoption cases will be processed or approved while the suspension remains in effect. Adoption cases approved before the suspension remain valid.