Coalition for Open Adoption Records (C.O.A.R.)
C.O.A.R, the Coalition for Open Adoption Records, is comprised of members of the adoption community who believe that adoption records in Ontario must be opened now. As an inclusive group, we seek your input and endorsement of the campaign to open adoption records now.
We have supported a number of bills to open records to adult adoptees and birth parents.
Minister Pupatello introduces Bill 183:On March 29, 2005, Bill 183 had first reading in the Ontario Legislature. This government bill would allow adoptees over the age of 18 to have access to copies of their original birth records that will provide them with the original birth name and may identify birth parents and allow birth parents to have access to birth records and adoption orders once the adoptee has reached 19, providing the name that the child was given after the adoption;
The bill includes a no-contact notice. Filing one would mean that the individual receiving identifying information would commit in writing not to contact the birth relative who requested a no-contact notice. This also means that individuals who violate a no-contact notice may be fined up to $50,000.
see what you can do to help Bill 183.
press release in response to the Information & Privacy Commissioner's opinion on Bill 183.
Misinformation from the Privacy CommissionerOn June 29 2005, Ontario’s powerful Information & Privacy Commissioner, Ann Cavoukian, lost her credibility with the adoption community. She issued her latest attack on Bill 183 called Fact Sheet on Adoption Information Disclosure (the link is to her web site).
The “Fact Sheet” contains many contradictions, errors and misrepresentations used to justify a disclosure veto in Bill 183, Ontario’s Adoption Information Act that is planned to reach third reading in the legislature this fall.
Click here to read COAR's rebuttal of the privacy commissioner's Fact Sheet.
Sept. 14: Click here to read the response by Dr. Karen March (Associate Professor of Sociology, Carleton University)and Dr. Charlene Miall (Professor of Sociology, McMaster University) to the IPC's "A Review of the Literature on Adoption-Related Research: The Implications for Proposed Legislation"
Another bill that's currently active in the legislature is Bill 14. Bill 14 was introduced by Marilyn Churley and had First Reading on Dec. 4, 2003. Second Reading may happen in this session.
Bill 14 would give adult adoptees access to their original birth certificates and birth parents of adult adoptees access to the adoptee's amended birth certificate subject to a contact veto. The penalty for contact despite a filed veto is set at $10,000.
The Legislature may remain in session up to June 23, 2005. There is still time to contact your MPP and ask them to support these bills.
During the 2003 election we ran a survey to gather input from candidates about their feelings on open records. You can also view the voting history of re-elected MPPs on opening adoption records.
COAR is preparing information about the service of the Adoption Disclosure Registry to submit to the Ombudsman. If you are an Ontario adoptee and have applied to the Adoption Disclosure Registry (ADR), please fill out our survey.
Please stay tuned to this site for updates and information on how you can help.
- C.O.A.R.'s letter to those interested in adoption disclosure reform and accompanying petition to the Ontario Legislature
- Members: C.O.A.R. is made up of many groups across Ontario concerned with adoption disclosure reform
- Links: Links to a number of related sites
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Page last updated: May 26, 2005