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ACTION ALERT- ILLINOIS BILL – HB 5428, Contact State Senators TODAY, ask them to vote “No”!

Illinois HB 5428 is scheduled to reach the state Senate tomorrow, Tuesday March 23  where it will be awaiting committee assignment and assigned a Senate bill number.

Please contact Illinois state Senators ASAP to urge them to vote “NO” on this destructive, anti-adoptee bill.

HB 5428 is being marketed as a bill that would give all adopted adults access to their original birth certificates, sadly that is NOT what the legislation’s actual effect would be.

REAL adoptee rights legislation simply restores to us what was taken from us by the state, the right to access our  unamended original birth certificates. Nothing more, nothing less. REAL adoptee rights are grounded in equal treatment under law for adopted people.

Instead, this bill mucks up adopted people’s already gutted access yet further. Here are a few highlights of what the legislation would do:

  • retain the system under which mothers are able to file affidavits of denial, in other words, the veto system that when used  leaves some number of adoptees behind. (see my post Bastard Access- either we all go together or we don’t go at all- “Nobody gets left behind. Or forgotten” for some of my earlier writing on that.) Bastard Nation has written repeatedly about how such veto systems create an extraordinary ability, one non-adoptive parents do not have,  for some to veto the rights of their own offspring to state held documentation that pertains to them. In states where such vetos have passed, all legislation going forward has had to deal with that newly created class of adoptees, those who have been vetoed, making genuine full rights restoration nearly impossible. It grants veto powers to parents who relinquished or lost all legal rights to the adoptee as a child.
  • allow the state to delete a variety of identifying information from official documents. Scrubbing documents of information already collected goes against the very spirit of restoring the information, the state once held in trust for adopted people too young to protect their own interests at the time. This alone completely invalidates HB 5428 as any form of an “adoptee rights bill.” Whiteout is never a tool of rights expansion.
  • buttresses and further funds promotion of Illinois’ broken Confidential Intermediary (CI) system. Both 73adoptee (see for example, Caveat Emptor On Confidential Intermediary Programs or Case Closed! Another Adoptee Becomes A Confidential Intermediary Statistic) and BastardGrannyAnnie (see for example THE CHEESE STANDS ALONE) have written a fair amount about what the Illinois CI system has meant in practical application. (Bastardette has also been writing over the course of years now about the broader situation in Illinois pertaining to adoptee rights restoration.)
  • By way of promotion of the CI system, allow me to quote from Mary Lynn Fuller’s Rights of Adoptees post “An OBC-Access Public Information Campaign Oversight Committee will be appointed for a year-long nationwide campaign to inform the public in earnest about the conditions under which an adult adopted or surrendered person may receive a non-certified copy of his or her OBC”. Let’s pause for a moment to contemplate that, the bill would provide funding for a year long national campaign advertising Illinois’ CI system, this at a time when Illinois is facing a budget crisis and cuts.

Full text of HB 5428 can be found here.

Write the state Senators and urge them to vote “NO,” against the bill as it currently stands.

Illinois needs a REAL Original Birth Certificate Access bill, one that simply restores access to the original birth certificates to all. Adoptee rights legislation should be about fairness, about restoring to adopted people equal treatment under law, not the construction of elaborate new schemes to redact our documents, grant veto abilities, or entrench and support the condescending and broken Confidential Intermediary apparatus.

HB 5428 then, in order to even begin to qualify as adoptee supportive legislation would need to be amended such that it would restore to ALL adoptees access to their original birth certificates, without restriction. Barring such changes, HB 5428 should be pulled or left to die in committee.

Additional resources:

Illinois State Senators contact information

Illinois Open/Bastard Nation Press Release- ADOPTEE RIGHTS SQUASHED AGAIN IN NEW ILLINOIS BILL – HB 5428

Illinois Open

Illinois Open blog

Bastard Nation

Bastard Nation Action Alert blog


Finally, Bastardette is asking those who tweet about the legislation to use #IILHB5428 so that we can keep track of who’s writing about it.

One Response to “ACTION ALERT- ILLINOIS BILL – HB 5428, Contact State Senators TODAY, ask them to vote “No”!”

  1. Triona Guidry Says:

    Thanks for posting this. This bill is horrendous and the more opposition we can build against it, the better.

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