preTools for Open Records Activism:
THE CHARTER OF ADOPTEE RIGHTS


This Charter was drafted as a tool for use by the Open Records movement in North America. It can be used to lobby human rights agencies, state governments, etc. to pass as part of their human rights codes, to form the basis of open records legislation (AND the right of adoptees to self-determination). May be reprinted on websites, in newsletters, books or other publications. Persuade your state or provincial government to sign this into law!

- CHARTER OF ADOPTEE RIGHTS -

Whereas ARTICLE 1 of the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS states, "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights."

Whereas ARTICLE 2 of the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS states, "Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status."

Whereas ARTICLE 3 of the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS states, "Everyone has the right to life, liberty and the security of person."

Whereas ARTICLE 4 of the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS states, "No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms."

Whereas ARTICLE 6 of the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS states, "Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law."

Whereas ARTICLE 7 of the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS states, "All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination."

Whereas all Citizens - both adopted and non-adopted - are equal before the Law,

WE THE UNDERSIGNED, recognize that,

(1) All persons have the right to know whether or not they have been adopted. Furthermore, no-one has the right to withhold such information from another person.

(2) All persons have the right to an identity, and to know what their identities were at all stages of their lives. Persuant to this, all adults have the right to obtain and possess all government documents that pertain to their historical, genetic, and legal identities, including:

a) Their legal names at all times during their lives, both before and after any adoptions have taken place;
b) Their place and date of birth;
c) The identities of their natural parents;
d) The identities of natural siblings, grandparents, and other family members;
e) All birth records pertaining to them;

that pertain to times in their lives both before and after any adoptions take place.

(3) As all persons have the right to freedom of association, adults who have been separated from their families through adoption have a right to establish communication with their original families, respecting any contact preference requests made by individual members.

(4) As all persons have the right to liberty and freedom from slavery, all adults have the right to build loving family relationships with any other adult, without being limited by feelings of obligation, guilt, or loyalty.

(5) Just as two consenting adults have the right to form a legally-recognized marital relationship through marriage, thus two consenting adults have the same right to establish a legally-recognized parent/child (filial) relationship with each other through adult adoption.

(6) Just as two consenting adults have the right to dissolve a marital relationship through divorce or annulment, thus adults have the same right to annul any legally-recognized parent/child (filial) relationship they have with a parent, either by birth or adoption.


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