No “Horror Stories” Have Resulted From Access
“By the end of June, [Oregon] Ballet Initiative 58 attorney and adoption activist Thomas McDermott suggested that most adopted adults and birth parents were reuniting quietly because, as Helen Hill, founder of the Ballot Initiative 58 campaign put it (Taylor, 2000b), “it’s a personal and private experience for most people.” Significantly, Frank Hunsaker (Taylor, 200b) (Taylor, 2000b), who was the leader of the opposition to Ballet 58 and the chief counsel of the constitutional challenge to Ballet Initiative 58, admitted that, “I have not heard any so-called horror stories.” (emphasis added) (p.E1). Hunsaker, who was in contact with a network of birth mothers, including the Jane Does he had initially defended and dozens of distraught birth mothers who called him in the aftermath of Ballot Initiative 58’s passage, was poised to publicize any social disturbance he came across. Hunsaker’s statement that birth mother’s lives had not been destroyed nor their privacy invaded, as he had repeatedly predicted, seriously undermined the adverse social impact theory that had been used repeatedly to attack Ballot Initiative 58.”
Carp, W.E., (2007) Does opening adoption records have an adverse social impact? Some lessons from the US., Great Britain, and Australia, 1953-2007. Adoption Quarterly, 10 (3-4), p. 37.
“A commission [in New South Wales, Australia] that was set up to study the impact of the law reported that “triad members complied with the provisions of the contact veto to an extraordinary degree….It is not easy to think of other laws which have such a high level of compliance.” (emphasis added)
For The Records II: An Examination of the History and Impact Of Adult Adoptee Access to Original Birth Certificates, Policy & Practice Perspective, July 2010, Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. p. 33, citing Carp, W.E., (2007) Does opening adoption records have an adverse social impact? Some lessons from the US., Great Britain, and Australia, 1953-2007. Adoption Quarterly, 10 (3-4), 29-52.
“Triseliotis’ research on the impact of birth certificate access worldwide found that “a policy of open records has been operating in Scotland since 1930 and in England from 1976 onwards, with no evidence of adopted persons misusing or abusing this facility. The experience of countries such as Finland, Israel and New Zealand, where open records operate, has been similar. (Triseliotis, 1992) With regard to New South Wales, Australia, Carp (2007) concluded: “None of the dangers people had feared – that their privacy would be invaded and their families destroyed – had materialized” (p. 48) Additional countries that provide OBC access include Germany, the United Kingdom,. Belgium, Holland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, some Canadian provinces, Israel and Taiwan.” (emphasis added.)
For The Records II: An Examination of the History and Impact Of Adult Adoptee Access to Original Birth Certificates, Policy & Practice Perspective, July 2010, Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. p. 34, citing Triseliotis, J. (1992) Letter To Members of the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey.