Garth McCrea, the chair of the Coalition for Open Adoption Records, said he has been trying for three years to get the law changed so that these records can be unsealed. (Facebook)
However, McCrea said the election in September of the Liberal government has put everything on hold.
McCrea said he's frustrated that the file seems to be forgotten because of the government's priority on public finances.
"I'm 50 years old, I'm an adoptee. The information has been kept from me for 50 years," he said.
"I'm a pretty patient man, I've been at this for well over three years so I know in terms of government making change that these things can take time."
New Brunswick's refusal to unseal adoption records is hampering many people from trying to reconnect with birth parents or their adopted children.
Edmonton's Susan Cockle is seeking help in New Brunswick to track down her birth parents, nearly 50 years after she was adopted in Moncton. She is making the public request for assistance because she cannot access her adoption records.
The Coalition for Open Adoption Records is being supported by many other similar groups. McCrea said he has members from across Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, who want New Brunswick to open up its adoption records.
He said all New Brunswick has to do is to adopt the rules that already exist in Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador or some of the western provinces.
Children search for birth parents
Kathy Reid was born Carol Joy Marina Stewart at the Salvation Army-run Evangeline Home for unwed mothers in Saint John in 1956.
She was adopted in 1958 and when her adoptive parents died in 1962, she was sent to live in Ontario with a guardian. She grew up with another adopted child, her stepbrother.
He was born in Ontario and has access to his birth parents.
Reid and all other adopted children born in Quebec and the Maritimes don't have that right because those provinces continue to seal adoption records.
Reid said she's frustrated by the pace of change in New Brunswick and she wrote to Social Development Minister Cathy Rogers in January.
The minister responded in February to say the department is still evaluating the information.
Rogers said the opening of adoption records is an extremely personal matter for individuals and the government must ensure the interest of all parties is taken into consideration with any proposed legislative change.
Heart-wrenching casesMarie Crouse, the president of Parent Finders New Brunswick, said this policy of sealing adoption records affects thousands of people.
Parent Finders is a private group that is trying to put adopted children in touch with their birth parents.
She said just in her database she has roughly 4,500 people who were adopted who are actively searching for their birth parents.
She has another 850 birth parents or relatives who are looking for the child that was put up for adoption
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