BUCKEYES FOR EQUAL ACCESS:
OPEN RECORDS FOR ALL OHIO ADOPTEES
PLEASE DISTRIBUTE FREELY
OHIO ACTION ALERT
BUCKEYES FOR EQUAL ACCESS SAYS:
OHIO ADOPTEES NEED YOUR HELP NOW!
SUB BILL ERASES BIRTH CERTIFICATE ACCESS
On April 16, 2008 a substitute bill for HB 7, an adoption/fostercare reform bill, which included original birth certificate access for all post-1963 adopted adults without restriction, was introduced in the House Health The sub bill, (also called LSC 127 0671-4), deletes all reference to obc access found in the original bill; thus, maintaining the current 3-tiered yes-no-maybe system that divides obc access by date of adoption/date of birth and first parent permission.*
Original HB 7: http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/bills.cfm?ID=127_HB_7 (click on link at left)
Sub HB 7: http://www.adoptionnetwork.org/filegallery.asp?f=270&linkId=1346 (2n square on right—pdf.)
A hearing on Sub Bill 7 bill is scheduled for 4:00 PM, Wednesday, April 23 in Room 017 (basement) of the Statehouse Testimony requesting the reinstatement of unrestricted obc access can be given. Bring 20 copies of your testimony for the committee. If you can’t testify, then come to support.
If you plan to testify please call Kara Joseph in Rep. Tom Brinkman’s office at .
We have been told that another hearing on Sub Bill 7 will probably be held on Wednesday, April 30 so save that date, too. Please check with our http://www.myspace.com/beaohio page for updates.
FULL ACCESS MUST BE RETURNED!
If you are an adoptee, birthparent, adoptive parent or currently live in or have an Ohio connection, please contact the Health Committee today and urge them to:
- Support HB 7 as written. Reject Sub Bill 7 unless the exact unrestricted access language from the original HB 7 is restored.
- Support the addition of a contact preference form, if presented.
- Reject all attempts to restrict obc access to any adopted adult for any reason through disclosure vetoes or other methods.
TALKING POINTS—HB 7 as written
- is inclusive. It acknowledges a legally, morally, and ethically correct one-size-fits all standard of identity and records rights for all adopted persons. It treats the adopted the same as the non-adopted.
- treats all Ohio adoptees equally. It abolishes the discriminatory 3-tiered access system based on date of birth, date of adoption availability, or birth parent permission.
- does not open original birth certificates and other records to the public.
- does not change adoption procedures
- is pro-adoption. It is not controversial. It reflects best practice adoption standards. Unrestricted access to the original birth certificate is a priority of every adoption reform organization in the US. Unrestricted access is supported by the majority adoption professionals.
- is about rights not reunions. It is about the relation of adoptees to the state.
- is non-partisan. In states where access has been restored, Republicans and Democrats sponsored the legislation and voted YES.
If you are a birthparent tell the committee:
- You were never promised anonymity nor did you ask for it.
- You do not expect or need “special rights”
If you are an adoptive parent tell the committee:
- Your son or daughter is not a second class citizen; he or she deserves the same right of identity and public records access as the not-adopted.
- Adoption is a strong institution and can only be strengthened in by openness and truth.
*Current Ohio law:
- Persons adopted before January 1, 1964: unrestricted access
- Persons adopted January 1, 1964-September 18, 1996: access by court order
- Persons adopted September 19, 1996-present: unrestricted access at age of majority unless a birthparent has filed a disclosure veto with the state; then the adoptee is barred from receiving a copy of their original birth certificate—the public record of their own birth.
PLEASE E-MAIL, WRITE, CALL, or FAX THE MEMBERS OF OHIO HOUSE HEALTH COMMITTEE IMMEDIATELY. TELL THEM TO SUPPORT HB 7 AS WRITTEN AND THAT ANY RESTRICTION TO ACCESS IS UNACCEPTABLE TO OHIO ADOPTEES. TELL THEM YOUR LIFE AND RIGHTS COUNT.
The most important members to contact, by phone even if you talk to their aides, are Representatives Matt Huffman (R-Lima), Robert Mecklenborg (R-Cincinnati), and Speaker of the House Jon Husted.
*Speaker Jon Husted
77 S. High St.
Telephone: (614) 466-5316
Email Address: email@example.com
*Lynn Wachtmann (R)
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ranking Minority Member:
Brian G. Williams (D)
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Barbara Boyd (D)
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Edna Brown (D)
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Michael DeBose (D)
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Lorraine M. Fende (D)
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Bruce W. Goodwin (R)
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Jay Hottinger (R)
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Tom Letson (D)
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*Robert Mecklenborg (R)
Telephone: , or in district
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Robert J. Otterman (D)
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W. Scott Oelslager (R)
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Chris Redfern (D)
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Carol-Ann Schindel (R)
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Fred Strahorn (D)
Assistant Minority Whip
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Joseph W. Uecker (R)
Email Address: email@example.com
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