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House approves adoptee access to birth certificates

Rep. David Alexander, D-Enfield (Photo by Christine Stuart)
Rep. David Alexander, D-Enfield (Photo by Christine Stuart)

HARTFORD, Conn. – The House approved legislation early Friday morning to give adult adoptees access to previously sealed birth certificates containing the names of their biological parents.

In Connecticut and most other states, adoptees only have access to amended birth certificates that omit the parents’ names. Adoptees argue that the redacted birth records create health risks for them. Without knowing their family medical histories, they cannot be screened for illnesses to which they are predisposed based on family medical history and genetics.

The bill was brought out around 12:45 a.m. by Rep. David Alexander, an Enfield Democrat who was adopted as a child. Lawmakers approved it on a 106-29 vote around 1:20 a.m.

“This is a tough issue,” Alexander said during the debate. “It’s a very emotional issue and it’s difficult to talk about . . . but the primary motivation behind the bill and for opening up these records is for the medical history and also for the individual adoptees’ identity.”

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.

Comments

3 responses to “House approves adoptee access to birth certificates”

  1. EveT

    I hope the Senate will approve this and I hope Gov. Malloy will sign it. Any birth parent will tell you, they were never given a guarantee of anonymity. Any adopted person will tell you, they had no say over what happened when they were an infant. Science has advanced by leaps and bounds since the days when heredity was mere guesswork — today there are hundreds of medical conditions and predispositions that have identifiable hereditary components. Adoptees, like everyone else, need to know their genetic families.

  2. John Frank sr

    As an adult adoptee, now a senior citizen, I was able to identify and find my birth mother fifty years after being adopted. I think passing this bill was a mistake and will have all kinds of bad results. In my case, I was fortunate to find a birth mother who was both glad to meet me as an adult and terrified her other adult children would find out she had given up a child for adoption and kept a secret from them all their lives. Just having access to a birth certificate will not supply any medical history information and taking away the promise of anonymity will cause too many frightened young women to make terrible decisions.

  3. Casey Smith

    As another adult adoptee born before 1983, I would like a copy of my original birth certificate. I already know who my birth mother was, and had contact with my half-sibling. I’d just like to have the complete record.

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