Indiana’s adult adoptees have achieved yet another victory on their path to equal access to birth records. The House Judiciary Committee voted 11-2 in favor of Senate Bill 91, which if passed would give adult adoptees from Indiana’s “closed records” period access to their original birth certificate and adoption records.
Advocates from Hoosiers for Equal Access to Records (HEAR), a non-profit formed to push for adult adoptee access legislation in Indiana, applauded the committee for hearing the concerns of adoptees.
“We thank the House Judiciary Committee members for their commitment to providing equal access to personal information for all adoptees,” said Pam Kroskie, president of HEAR.
Under current law, Hoosiers adopted after 1994 have access to their records. Those adopted between 1941 and 1993 during Indiana’s “closed records” period are forced to use a difficult and expensive intermediary system for getting their records—causing many to quit their search in frustration, or never start. The new law will equalize access to information for all adoptees.
“SB 91 will finally allow adoptees to find the closure they desperately seek, uncover vital answers about their medical history and cure administrative headaches that come from having an amended birth certificate,” Kroskie said.
To keep a direct line of communication open with the public and legislators, HEAR has created a website that offers updates on the bill and an interface for easily writing legislators with messages of support. Visit the website at http://www.indianahear.org.
Hoosiers for Equal Access to Records, Inc. (HEAR) is a non-profit organization dedicated to removing the shame and secrecy surrounding Indiana’s closed adoptions period. It calls on adoptees, birth/first mothers, adoptive parents and adoption placement professionals to band together to improve adoption education, and promote adult adoptees’ access to their original birth certificates.