Legislature votes to allow adoptees to access birth records

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) _ The Missouri Legislature has voted to give adoptees a way to access their original birth certificates.

The House voted 127-28 Wednesday to pass the Adpotee Rights Act. The Senate passed the bill 31-0 Tuesday, and it now goes to the governor.

An original birth certificate could help an adoptee identify his or her biological parent. Current law only allows adoptees to access identifying information if their biological parents consent or have died.

Supporters said making it easier to access that information could help adoptees better understand their own health.

The bill would allow birth parents to withhold their identifying information if they file paperwork with the state.

Critics said many people won’t know to file those forms, and it would be wrong to undo an anonymous adoption agreement.