Women's E-News

U.S. WOMEN: BIRTH MOTHERS, ADOPTEES HAVE RIGHT TO RECORDS.

By Lorraine Dusky

NEW YORK, December 29 2004 (WOMENSENEWS) Many women who surrendered their children for adoption hope to be "found." As one of them--now thankfully reunited--I'm celebrating Jan. 1 as the day when New Hampshire joins those states with open birth records.

Editor's Note: The following is a commentary. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily the views of Women's eNews.

On Monday, Janet Allen plans to walk into the Division of Vital Records Administration in Concord, N.H., and ask for a copy of her original birth certificate. It will be the first time she can legally obtain it.

Allen, 51, a state legislator, was adopted as an infant. In New Hampshire, where she was born and adopted, Allen has been denied the right to that singular piece of paper that contains the answer to one of life's most basic questions: Who am I? The change in the law occurs two days from now, New Years Day, 2005. As one of the people who worked for the bill's passage, Allen will be first in line.

"I am no longer a child and am delighted to finally have the same rights as non-adopted adults," she says. …

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