Once upon a time in Massachusetts Senator Fargo introduced an adoptee rights bill. It was a bill that would allow ALL adoptees to unconditionally access their original birth certificates upon reaching the age of maturity. It contained a contact preference form, which addressed birth parents’ feelings in a private way but would not affect the issuing of original birth certificates. SB 959 was an excellent bill and folks supported it all over the state and indeed, all over the country.
SB 959 had a hearing way back in October 2005. The room overflowed with supporters of the bill. People from near and far traveled to the capital to tell The Committee on Children and Families how excited they were about this bill; it’s time has come. The sweet smell of success filled the air.
Then, from October through May, the bill sat in the hands of the Committee and no one heard so much as a "boo" from them. Rumors were flying that the committee was changing the intent of the bill, but until today, it was hard to imagine that the rumors were true. But they were, and then some!
The Committee on Children and Families has turned into the "Committee on Children & Families Who Live On Animal Farm." The new Committee’s motto, of course, is "All adoptees are equal, but some are more equal then others."
Here’s how this committee of elected representatives and senators massacred a bill that started out treating ALL adopted adults equally.
Adopted ADULTS in Massachusetts will be sub-divided into three separate categories based upon arbitrary years of birth. The Animal Farm Committee has set forth different rules to govern each sub- group, who are "really all equal." Wink, wink.
1) Adoptees born before 1974: They may request and receive their original birth certificates.
2) Adoptees born between 1974 and 2008. These adoptees will continue to have their original birth certificates sealed. The existing law will still govern these adoptees. They may petition the court but if any birthmother says NO - then "no" it is.
3) Adoptees who will be born after 2008, These unborn babes will be able to request and receive their original birth certificates when they reach eighteen years of age.
I think The Animal Farm Committee figured that adoptees born before 1974 will die off soon or grow too old and decrepit and will stop bothering the Commonwealth for their original birth certificates.
Adoptees in the middle group, born between 1974 and 2008, continue to be screwed by the state because they’re too young, they’re still all around, and they’re the "trouble-makers." Gotta shut them up.
And the unborn babes? Well, the members of the Animal Farm Committee will most likely not be around in 2026, at least not in the legislature, so adoptees will become some other lawmakers’ "problems."
Adoptees, friends and relatives of adoptees, and every citizen of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts - speak now or forever hold your peace. If you all sit silently now and let this group of adoptee-hating legislators treat you as second, third and forth class citizens, then you will deserve what you get:
A state that discriminates against adopted men and women, all of whom are United States Citizens.
A state that systematically withholds identity documents from adopted adults.
A state that blatantly says adopted men and women are not capable of managing their own personal issues like all the other citizens.
A state that looks with shame on adoptees.
A state that penalizes adoptees whose only crime was to be adopted.
A state that announces loud and clear - through this new bill - that adopted adults just don’t matter to the state in the same way as all other citizens.
SPEAK OUT NOW. TELL YOUR SENATOR TO VOTE NO WHEN THIS MONSTROUS SB 959 COMES TO THE SENATE FLOOR. DON’T LET ADOPTEES BE SENT TO THE ANIMAL FARM.
Call or write your senator today. Tell him or her that you believe ALL ADOPTED ADULTS must be treated equally under the law. Tell him or her that ALL ADOPTED ADULTS must be able to get their original birth certificates, now, -with no strings attached!
This website will tell you the name and contact information for your Massachusetts senator. It’s as easy as two clicks on your computer.