March 27, 2012

HB 5501 adoption bill voted down in the House


HB 5501 (the adoption bill) that the IFRL opposed was voted down in the House late Monday afternoon.
HB 5501 would have allowed an adopted person [over 21 years old] to be issued upon written request and without show of cause a certified copy of an adoption order under certain conditions.
Court records of adoption can have a large amount of confidential information that the birth parents expected to be under seal by the courts. This includes not only the names of the birth parents, but the addresses, other related and non-related siblings, fitness of parents, and more!
These birth parents, and generally the birth mothers expected privacy and confidentiality of their identities and family background when the adoption was taking place. HB 5501 eliminates much of that confidentiality. These women deserve this confidentiality since the decision whether to give up for adoption or have an aborton was often based on a factor of confidentiality. What trust can women have who struggle with this when the Illinois General Assembly continues with legislation to breakdown confidentiality?
Proponents of the law two years ago changing the adoption law, which exposed the birth parents by allowing adopted children to obtain a copy of the original certificate with the birth parents names, stated that the law allowed for preserving the birth parents privacy. The idea was to do a media campaign to alert birth parents to the section in that new law in which they could have their names redacted from the original birth certificate. This has proved to be a failure, as opponents of the law two years ago have warned. After a local and nation media effort, ONLY 500 birth parents out of over ONE MILLION came forward to ask for a redaction of their names. This doesn't show a good media effort, but just the opposite – very few birth parents learned of the new law! We in pro-life had said that the birth parents would not know the new law and requirements existed and the evidence bares this out.

Source: Illinois Federation for Right to Life