On 14th December, 2021 the The Joint Committee on Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth published its Report on the Birth (Information and Tracing Bill) 2021. The Committee made strong recommendations that addressed the concerns of Adoption Rights Alliance and the Clann Project. The Minister must now implement the Committee’s recommendations in full.
Click here to email TDs and Senators, asking them to urge Minister O’Gorman to implement the recommendations of the Children’s Committee on the Birth (Information and Tracing Bill).
If you experience difficulty using the link, the text of the email is available below and you can access TDs and Senators’ emails here.
Dear TDs and Senators,
I am contacting you about the Birth (Information and Tracing) Bill. Please urge Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman to implement the recommendations of the Oireachtas Children’s Committee on the Birth (Information and Tracing) Bill.
The Bill must be amended to ensure:
1. Unconditional access to birth certificates and ‘birth information’ for everyone, regardless of natural parents’ contact preferences. The mandatory Information Session must be removed from the Bill. Nobody can be left behind.
2. A clear statutory right of access to one’s own ‘care’ or adoption file (including as a mother) and to records concerning a family member who died in ‘care’ or adoption.
3. The file, the whole file and nothing but the file: No compromising GDPR rights, no discrimination when accessing personal data, and a strong presumption towards openness, in light of the fact that the personal data in question relates to injustices to which mothers, adopted people, others placed in ‘care’ and families were subjected.
4. A statutory right of access to the administrative records, wherever they are held, of all adoption agencies, institutions, State bodies and others involved with forced family separation for natural mothers, survivors, adopted people and others placed in ‘care’.
5. A clear commitment in the legislation to the safeguarding and centralisation of all relevant records in the National Memorial and Records Centre.
6. An enhanced tracing service, run by independent genealogists, to include a robust complaints mechanism and training for social workers and others involved in the service.
7. The new statutory based Contact Preference Register should include all registrations from the National Adoption Contact Preference Register (NACPR), and the contact preference options from the NACPR should be reinstated.
8. The right to know you are adopted.
9. Repeal of ‘gagging orders’ in the Residential Institutions Redress Act 2002
10. Information rights for adopted children and their natural parents.