COLUMBUS –State Reps. Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood) and Dorothy Pelanda (R-Marysville) announce the passage of House Bill 61 today, a bill to provide persons adopted between 1964-1996 access to their original birth certificate. The bill passed by a nearly unanimous vote of 96 to 1.
“As a joint sponsor of this bill, I am glad to have worked with my colleague across the aisle to pass legislation that will help bring equality for Ohio’s adoptees,” said Rep. Antonio. “This bill provides peace of mind as well as a chance to for adoptees to know their biological family’s medical history or their birth parents’ contact preference.”
Rep. Antonio and Rep. Pelanda worked in a bipartisan way to move HB 61 through the chamber fairly quickly. Both Representatives have been touched personally by adoption, and were able to bring advocates from all over the country to the Ohio House to testify in favor of needed updates to Ohio’s adoption laws.
House Bill 61 will delay the effective date of the bill for one year after it is signed in to law to give birthparents a chance to voluntarily file a “contact preference form” alongside the birth certificate to make known how or if they wish to be contacted.
House Bill 61 now goes to the Senate for committee hearings. Senators Beagle and Burke introduced Senate Bill 23, companion legislation to the House measure, earlier this year.