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Sunday, January 8, 2012

WE NEED YOU NOW! New Bill in WA state

IMPORTANT!! New WA bill for OBCs and Non-ID! 

Write these lawmakers! I did!

Penni writes on Soaring Angels:
Hello- We have a new bill this year that would release original birth certificates (OBC) to Washington State adoptees AND would also compel counties and adoption agencies to give out ALL possibly non-id (changes the 'shall' to 'will' in the non-id RCW - YAY!!).

This bill is House Bill 2211:
http://apps. billinfo/ summary.aspx? bill=2211

Because there are certain legislators who are extremely anti-open records, we did have to agree to a compromise this year. This compromise would add an option for birth parents to file an affidavit of non-closure, which would
mean the adoptee couldn't get their original birth certificate. 

The good thing about this particular compromise is that it would expire every 2 years and the birth parent would have to renew it. Also, even if a birth parent would file an affidavit of non-disclosure, the adoptee would
still be able to get their non-identifying information.


We need all of you with a WA connection to contact your state representative and ask them to support House Bill 2211 (HB 2211). 

You can find your representatives here:
http://apps. DistrictFinder/ Default.aspx

If any of you live in a district with a representative on the House Judiciary Committee, and would be willing to set up a meeting, we could arrange to have someone from WA-CARE go with you to the meeting. 

Here are the members of the Judiciary Committee:
http://www.leg. Committees/ JUDI/Pages/ MembersStaff. aspx. 

Do any of you live in the districts belonging to Sen. Becker, Sen. Keiser, Sen. Stevens, and Sen. Pridemore?? If yes, we also need to try to set up meetings with one of these sentators in the event that the bill passes the
house and moves on to the senate, need to find a potential senator to sponsor the bill.

For more information about the efforts in WA to get the adoption laws changed, see the WA-CARE website: aspx

Next WA-CARE meeting: Wed, Jan 18, 2012, 11.30am at Cutter's Point Coffee, 5750 Ruddell Road SE, Lacey, WA.

Any comments or questions, please email WA-CARE at washingtonadopteerights@gmail. com
Thanks! Penni

From Trace: Write a letter to the legislators and email Penni and tell your story - good and bad - adoption secrecy is like a cancer and needs maximum exposure aimed at the lawmakers. The adoptee and their stories are critical to change these lawmakers minds.

TO:  Representative Tina Orwall

FROM:  Ms. Trace A DeMeyer

BILL:   2211 (For Adoptee Rights)

  Dear Rep Tina Orwall
I did live and work in WA state for many years but currently live in MA.
I am an adoptee and an author. My struggle to find my identity, my medical history, my ancestry, my family and my tribe is detailed in my memoir ONE SMALL SACRIFICE: Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects. My book is on Amazon. My blog ( has research and history and many articles by and about adoptees who are also struggling with archaic laws. Not all have American Indian ancestry.
Do you know who you are? Do you know what it is like not to know? Or date someone who could be your relative? Or get sick and not have medical history? Or have a fake birth certificate and now with the REAL ID ACT you may not be able to get a new drivers license or passport.
My friends Wanda and Tom are WA state adoptees and cannot find their parents. Is that right? They are adults, not children. It's possible their parents are dead but they remember their siblings before they were taken to CT to be adopted. That was a part of the Indian Adoption Project.
Excerpt from my second book SPLIT FEATHERS: TWO WORLDS
Administered by the Child Welfare League of America and funded by a federal contract from the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the U.S. Children’s Bureau, the Indian Adoption Project lasted from 1958 through 1967. During an era when matching dominated adoption practice, it placed 395 Native American children from 16 western states with white families in Illinois, Indiana, New York, Massachusetts, Missouri, and other states in the East and Midwest. (Only 14 children were adopted by Southern families and one child was adopted in Puerto Rico.) Approximately fifty public and private adoption agencies cooperated with the project, but the largest number of children were placed by agencies that were leaders in African-American adoptions and services to children of color: Louise Wise Services and Spence-Chapin Adoption Services (both of New York) and the Children’s Bureau of Delaware.
Because tribes are legally considered sovereign nations, the incorporation of Indian children into non-Indian families constituted a kind of international as well as transracial adoption...The Indian Adoption Project was perhaps the single most important exception to race-matching... It aspired to systematically place an entire child population across lines of nation, culture, and race. (85% of Indian children in 16 states were placed in CLOSED ADOPTIONS)(Each state had its own program after IAP using the ARENA projects which moved thousands of Indian children from Canada and the US to non-Indian adoptive families. I have more proof in book 2.)
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Native Americans challenged the idea that the Indian Adoption Project was a triumph and denounced the project as the most recent in a long line of genocidal policies toward native communities and cultures. In June 2001, Child Welfare League Executive Director Shay Bilchik legitimated Native concerns, formally apologizing for the Indian Adoption Project at a meeting of the National Indian Child Welfare Association. He put the Child Welfare League of America on record in support of the Indian Child Welfare Act. “No matter how well intentioned and how squarely in the mainstream this was at the time,” he said, “it was wrong; it was hurtful; and it reflected a kind of bias that surfaces feelings of shame.” Source:
When you consider all the lies and secrecy and harm that surrounds adoption, how does that make you feel? Trace A. DeMeyer

RESPONSE:  Ms. DeMeyer has requested a response to this message.

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Detailed discussion of the Bering Strait theory and other scientific theories about the population of the modern-day Americas is beyond the scope of this essay. However, it should be noted that Indian people have expressed suspicion that DNA analysis is a tool that scientists will use to support theories about the origins of tribal people that contradict tribal oral histories and origin stories. Perhaps more important,the alternative origin stories of scientists are seen as intending to weaken tribal land and other legal claims (and even diminish a history of colonialism?) that are supported in U.S. federal and tribal law. As genetic evidence has already been used to resolve land conflicts in Asian and Eastern European countries, this is not an unfounded fear.

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