I am going to try and make this post as uncomplicated as possible but that’s not going to be easy. Most of the people who read this blog are aware of this information. For those who read who may not be aware of these facts I urge you to ponder this situation and come to your own conclusions. If you are an adoptive parent or a birthparent you are obligated to have a clear understanding of the laws as they stand and the effect they have on your child.
I believe that presenting a unified front by those DIRECTLY INVOLVED meaning -adoptive parents, first parents and adoptees is necessary. We must use logic to combat agendas of personal gain and misguided moral judgement. These groups aren’t a bunch of schlups. We are talking about well established, well rooted, lucrative organizations working against our right to identity. This is NOT an easy battle.
When an open records bill is presented for consideration you can pretty much always count on the following organizations to show up in opposition.
National Council for Adoption
There are others opposed but again you can pretty much count on the above showing up.
Let’s use NJ as an example of these groups unified position , go read what they have to say.
The NCFA exists because of the support of it’s members which largely consist of ADOPTION AGENCIES. I believe agencies such as these see a very real threat to business in open records policy. Potential adoptive parents this is where YOU can make a serious difference. Do not use the services of an agency that supports closed records! Let them know you would not use an organization that would deliberately stand in the way of your future child’s rights.
The ACLU’s purpose is to protect the CIVIL LIBERTIES of citizens of the United States. These are a few key points taken from their mission statement. Does anyone see the hypocrisy in this?
# Your right to equal protection under the law – equal treatment regardless of race, sex, religion or national origin.
# Your right to due process – fair treatment by the government whenever the loss of your liberty or property is at stake.
# Your right to privacy – freedom from unwarranted government intrusion into your personal and private affairs.
Am I and millions of other adoptees not citizens of this country? I ask you, which represents the concept of civil liberties?
A.) Presumed wanted confidentiality by birthmothers?
B.) Adoptees, the only citizens in this country provided with FALSIFIED LEGAL DOCUMENTS regarding their identity? The only citizens who’s REAL and ORIGINAL birth certificate is unavailable to them.
It is important to note as stated so elloquently by a friend of mine: Birth parents have never had the legal right to anonymity from their offspring. Relinquishment and adoption are two separate legal acts. Records are and have been sealed at adoption only. If a child is relinquished but never adopted, they will retain their original records into adulthood.
In addition to their adoption services Catholic Charities and the Lutheran agencies offer:
NON -Identifying information which ranges in price (around 100.00).
Keep in mind that they are not only profiting from our adoptions but they are later charging us handsomely for our OWN INFORMATION. I know of several cases in which an adoptee paid for non-id which was later found to contain largely falsified information. Meaning, the information was changed, altered or “tweaked” prior to the adoptee being placed. Many of these adoptees suspect information was altered to make them more “adoptable”, changing or leaving out information that could make them “less desirable” to a potential adoptive parent. I’m sure you can imagine the ramifications of open records to an organization who may have had case workers take part in such underhanded practices.
Right to Life’s main contention with open records is that it will potentially raise the number of abortions if confidentiality is not offered to pregnant women.
Marie Tasey of NJ Right to Life says; “We believe that if you remove the option of confidentiality from a woman who is pregnant … that could encourage some women, for whom confidentiality is paramount, to have no other choice other than to have an abortion,”
She goes on to say;
“The result, Tasey said, would be a law designed to give adoptees more access to information about their origins, but would instead create obstacles for women to put their children up for adoption in the first place.”
Aside from the fact that this is an unsubstantiated MYTH, this mentality clearly supports the notion that being young and pregnant is still something to be ashamed of and hidden at all costs. It is NOT the message we should be sending women who find themselves pregnant and in need of unbiased and readily available support. As a matter of fact I suspect the possibility of knowing the fate of their child at some point would actually SUPPORT the idea of adoption for women considering that option.
I also honestly believe that women who would consider abortion aren’t going to be swayed not to (as Tasey suggests) by keeping records sealed. They are most likely going to make that decision based on personal belief and current circumstance.
I do not believe that confidentiality could ever be paramount (meaning superior to all others) to an adoptees right to identity. I am dismayed that this organization pushes to remove this so called “obstacle” from a perspective birthmother and proceed to place it directly in front of the child they claim to care so much about. It makes no sense.
I think we can all agree that at the very least these organizations motives are suspect and should be challenged. I do understand that for some adoptive parents the prospect of open records is daunting, as it is for some birthparents. However, the bottom line is YOUR CHILDREN are the ones who ultimately suffer by the laws as they stand. We are the ones who are being discriminated against. It is a parents job to set aside personal issues to ultimately do what is best for their children. Even though we have very influential groups working against our rights, adoptees should have at least FOUR people in their corner. Are you?
A point about this post I don’t want to get lost in the comments section:
Here’s what it boils down to: PROFIT. Businesses protecting their financial interests by supporting that which their customers demand. In the case of adoption the customers are PAP’s. It stands to reason that PAP’s are the key here. If they quit using the services of businesses that support closed records it would become financially detrimental for these businesses to do so. The big fish are easy targets for our blame but the bottom line is they are really not the source of the problem. Any wise businessman provides what their customers demand. It’s the CUSTOMERS that need to start demanding something different. If a business continued to support closed records for other reasons (such as unethical practices) they would simply cease to exist if their customers vanished!
*****This doesn’t only apply to the issue of open records. It also applies to the necessary demand for the ethical treatment of pregnant and new mothers as well!!!!!!!!! Do not allow emotional/ personal desire to overrule morals and ethics. Educate yourselves and do not allow yourselves to be scammed by unethical businesses! They do NOT have your best interests nor the child’s (and CERTAINLY not the mother’s) at heart, they have THEIR OWN best interests at heart. Regardless of how good their sales pitch is.*****