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NEW YORK: URGENT: Do Not Take Up and Consider NY S5964

June 19, 2015 News No Comments

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Issued June 18, 2015

BASTARD NATION ACTION ALERT:
DO NOT TAKE UP AND CONSIDER NEW YORK S5964!

In Conjunction with the New York Senate Action Alert: http://bastards.org/new-york-bastard-nation-action-ale…/

URGE THE NEW YORK TEMPORARY PRESIDENT FLANAGAN NOT TO TAKE UP AND CONSIDER S5964

The companion bill, A2901a passed the Assembly on June 18, 2015, by a vote of 108-18. Now our only chance to stop this legislation from becoming law is to kill it or delay it in the Senate.

Bill Text: http://open.nysenate.gov/legislation/bill/S5964-2015

S5964- Is in the Senate Rules Committee waiting to either be placed on the calendar or go to the full Senate for a floor vote.The bill has already went through its first and second reads. Bills placed before the Rules Committee are heard at the pleasure of the Temporary President as the Committee Chair.

Section 2 of the bill mandates that no one may release the adoptee’s biological surname without a court order.
Section 5 of the bill mandates the adoptee before having access to their original birth certificate must have written permission from the court and/or the biological parent(s).
Section 5 (B) requires the use of a confidential intermediary (CI) to locate the biological parent and obtain written permission.
Section 5 (E) (I) states if a biological parent can not be found or does not respond to the confidential intermediary, the release of the original birth certificate will be at the sole discretion of the presiding judge who shall consider whether such release would be detrimental to the birthparents and adoptive parents.
Section 5 (E) (II) mandates that if a biological parent does not give their consent under Section 5 (E) (I), a redacted original birth certificate will be issued.
Section 5 (H) requires the biological parent(s) to submit changes in a written and notarized notification.
Section 10 directs for the establishment of the adoption information registry.

******

Please, e-mail and call Temporary President Flanagan and urge him NOT to take up and consider S5964.

Phone:  518-455-2071
Email: flanagan@nysenate.gov

Email Template

Subject: Please, do NOT take up and consider S5964.

RE: Do NOT take up and consider. Bill is NOT the same as the original which was heavily supported.

To the Honorable New York Temporary President Flanagan, Chair of the Rules Committee,

I write today to urge you NOT to take up and consider S5964. I thank the author, Assembly member Weprin, and bill sponsor Senator Lanza, for their efforts to introduce a bill with access rights for adult adoptees to their own original birth certificate. Unfortunately, the bill was amended on Sunday June 14 and no longer resembles the original bill which garnered much support from adult adoptees, biological and adoptive parents, and adoption related institutions.

The amended version includes numerous violations of an adult adoptee’s due process rights. Not only does the bill address adult adoptees repeatedly as “children”; it attempts to strip away our rights, dignity, and portrays the state as seeing us as still being children.

Furthermore, allowing the court system to decide “at its own discretion” if birth parents cannot be found is rife with the potential for abuse. As adults, adopted as children, we do not need parental or court permission for any other aspect in our lives. Nor do those who were raised in their biological families. We do not need nor do we want it in this circumstance, either.

In the Assembly, legislators seems to be under the misimpression that birthparents were promised anonymity or “confidentiality” when they relinquished. To the contrary, there has been no evidence produced that any such promises were made. Even if they were, such promises could not have been enforced since the original birth record of an adoptee is only sealed upon adoption. If a child is never adopted, their birth record is never sealed, even if the birth parents’ rights have been terminated – voluntarily or involuntarily. Clearly, the sealing of records was intended as a measure to protect adoptive parents, not birthparents. As a society, we have moved beyond the outdated and harmful belief that lying to an adoptee about their adoption is best practice.

Instead of being a “middle ground answer” as the bill proponents charge, the bill creates more questions than answers.

* The bill does not contain a fiscal note. The cost of a CI is between $200-600 per individual. Even using the smaller amount, the financial burden placed upon the state for thousands of adoptees is staggering. Where will these funds come from? Taxpayers deserve to know. Will the state enact a fee schedule requiring adoptees to pay for the costs of these searches?

* In the event a biological parent is deceased then there is no need to “protect their confidentiality”, yet they will not be able to fulfill the necessary steps required by the bill. May the adult adoptee submit an obituary or a copy of the death certificate and receive their original birth certificate or must the adult adoptee still go to court? The bill is silent on this aspect.

* What about the adult adoptees who either are already in or who do not want reunion? Why are they being subjected to a legal mandate that strips them of their Constitutional rights so those who may want reunion may possibly have it?

ADULTS, adopted as children, will one day have their rights restored to them, equal and on par to the non-adopted. However, this vehicle of S5964 is not it. The bill asks that adult adoptees barter their rights to due process (equal protection under the law) in exchange for their right to their own state-held property.

Sir, please, do NOT take up S5964 for consideration. At the very least, we ask that the bill be sent to the Health committee for due consideration by committee members of the implications of the amendments.

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SAMPLE STATE ORGANIZATION RESOLUTION AGAINST VETOES AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS

SAMPLE STATE ORGANIZATION RESOLUTION AGAINST VETOES AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS

Any political organization seeking to enact true open records legislation should be very clear with both their constituents and the legislators they work with about what the essential provisions of the proposed bill are. Any modification or deletion of the essential provisions of a bill should be immediate cause to have the bill killed.

Any political organization seeking the assistance of Bastard Nation to pass open records legislation must hold unconditional access by adult adoptees to the original record of their birth as an essential provision that cannot be modified or deleted. Read our Mission Statement.

Bastard Nation will not assist any political organization to pass open records legislation unless their governing board or other leadership

passes a written resolution such as the following that commits the board to a strategy of no compromise on key provisions
informs its constituents of this commitment and this strategy
informs the sponsoring legislators of this commitment and this strategy.

WHEREAS we recognize that disclosure and contact vetoes, redactions, mandatory intermediaries and registry provisions are an affront to the dignity of adopted persons everywhere and a violation of their right to due process and equal treatment under the law,

WHEREAS there has been a demonstrable negative effect on the ability to pass unconditional open records in states that have passed veto legislation and/or any provisions that are less than unconditional access on demand by the adult adoptee,

WHEREAS our primary goal is to restore the right of adult adoptees everywhere to be treated as full citizens under the law,

WE HEREBY DECLARE that under no circumstances will we accept the addition of veto, redaction, intermediary, or registry provisions, or any conditional provisions to our legislation that would be less than unconditional access for adult adoptees to the original record of their birth. All legislative sponsors and members of this organization will be informed of our policy on this matter to ensure that the bill is pulled promptly in the event of such revisions.

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