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Adoption Services

Dáil Éireann Debate, Friday - 3 December 2021

Friday, 3 December 2021

Ceisteanna (37)

Holly Cairns


37. Deputy Holly Cairns asked the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth his response to a recommendation in a report by an adoptee organisation (details supplied). [59329/21]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

I am aware of the Adoptee Voices report published by Aitheantas in July this year, and have given careful consideration to this report, in the context of wider engagement with adoption stakeholders. I have also met with Aitheantas a number of times during 2020 and 2021 as part of my engagement with adoption stakeholders.

With regard to the recommendations concerning a review of historic adoptions, I am very conscious that every record on adoption represents the lives of a number of individuals. There are major ethical issues at play where the reality, identity and family and legal relationships that people have lived their whole lives may be fundamentally impacted. I am also conscious that, in some cases, records may simply not exist anymore.

From listening to those most centrally affected, I believe that what is important as an immediate priority is access to birth certificates and birth and early life information for adoptees. The Deputy will be aware that the Birth Information and Tracing legislation is currently undergoing pre-legislative scrutiny. If enacted, this legislation will, for the first time, enshrine in law the clear right of access to birth certificates, and other birth and early life information.

The legislation will provide the necessary legal framework for a strong and supportive information and tracing service.  It will ensure that any individual with a question about their origins is empowered to access their own records and is supported with regard to any related needs.