is a grassroots effort dedicated to passing legislation that will restore the human right for all adult adopted persons to have access to their original birth certificates (OBC).
Members of Access Massachusetts believe that current MA law is discriminatory because it does not allow access to adoptees born between July 17, 1974 and January 1, 2008.
Update on 2019-2020 legislative session!
An Act granting equal access to original birth certificate to all persons born in Massachusetts. H.1892 in the House (filed by Representatives Sean Garballey and Dan Cullinane) and S.1267 in the Senate (filed by Senator Anne Gobi). They were assigned to the Committee on Public Health. HEARING was held on DECEMBER 10, 2019. We submitted written testimony from 32 people, and 10 appeared to testify in person. The Committee reported out favorably. H.1892 moved to the HOUSE COMMITTEE ON THIRD READING.
H.1892 passed the House on Jul 27, 2020. Both H.1892 and S. 1267 were referred to the Senate Committee on Rules. Sadly, the 191st General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts ended without passage of An Act granting equal access to original birth certificates to all persons born in Massachusetts. This was the third time we filed to abolish the gap years, and although we made more progress this time than ever before, we did not achieve our goal.
Our sponsors in the House and Senate will refile in the new session. We will let you know as soon as we have bill numbers.
We will need everyone's help to gain as many co-sponsors as possible in both the House and the Senate. That effort will begin as soon as we have bill numbers.
Recap of 2017 - 2018 session:
Our bills were refiled at the beginning of the 2017 - 2018 legislative session. Legislators had until Feb 3, 2017 to sign on as co-sponsors to the House bill. We had a total of 56 supporters. (See the complete list.)
In the 2017 -2018 legislative session, bills were S.1195 and H.1163 An Act granting equal access to original birth certificates to all persons born in Massachusetts
Both bills were referred to the Joint Committee on Public Health. A hearing was held on Tuesday, May 16 2017. A panel testified on behalf of Access Massachusetts.
On May 30 2017 H.1163 (accompanied by S.1195) was referred to the House Committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling. It was reported out on June 23 2017.
Sadly, in spite of exceptional efforts by Access Massachusetts and our legislative sponsors, H.1163/S.1195 were not brought forward for action.
Advocate for equal rights for ALL persons born in MA! Join Access Massachusetts!
Why should you care about granting adopted persons access to their original birth certificates?
For many reasons...
Watch Jean Strauss's short film of #OBC bill sponsor, Representative Sean Garballey, who shares thoughts about not having access to his own original birth certificate.
Contact Massachusetts legislators and ask them to support
AN ACT GRANTING EQUAL ACCESS TO ORIGINAL BIRTH CERTIFICATES TO ALL PERSONS BORN IN MASSACHUSETTS