Memorandum from Professor John Triseliotis - INTRODUCTION

Adoption and Children Bill – in a Public Bill Committee am 11:00 am ar 21 Tachwedd 2001.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

I am writing as someone who has been looking forward to a new Adoption Act for a number of years now. As a result I welcome many of the recommendations featuring in the Bill which is now before the Committee. However, I have been both surprised and dismayed at clauses 53-62 and 76 which essentially will deprive eventually adopted people of the existing right to have access to their birth records and other relevant information. Not only these clauses have appeared out of the blue without prior consultation but their basis is unknown to me and to many other people I talked to.

I have an interest in the matter because I carried out on behalf of the Houghton Committee the original study which led to the opening of the records in England and Wales. Scotland provided for this since 1930. Before I give provisional findings from a current study relevant to the debate, it would be helpful, to summarise how Section 51 Adoption Act 1976, (previously Section 26 Children Act 1975), has come about.