JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri-born adoptees older than 18-years-old are now able to receive a copy of their original birth certificate.
The Missouri Adoptee Rights Act was signed into law by Gov. Jay Nixon in July 2016. On Oct. 1, 2017, the Department of Health and Senior Services began accepting applications from Missouri-born adoptees who wish to request a copy of their original birth certificate.
Adoptees born before 1941 could request a copy of their original birth certificate in August 2016.
The Department of Health and Senior Services will be presenting original birth certificates to about 30 adoptees. Missouri state representative Don Phillips, R-Kimberling City, sponsor of the Missouri Adoptee Rights Act, will also be present and receiving his birth certificate.
"It's going to be a significant thing for me," Phillips said. "I don't know exactly how I'll react, but I know I'm looking forward to getting it and I'm looking forward to seeing my constituent be the first to receive one."
It is estimated this new law will affect hundreds of thousands of adult adoptees.
"In a lot of cases, they'll be able to locate some biological relatives," Phillips said. "They'll be able to get that document that's rightfully theirs under the constitution and have some closure, so to speak."
G's Adoption Registry, a non-profit, is hosting the ceremony as part of its 'Breaking the Seal' event at the Capitol Plaza Hotel from Sunday through Tuesday.
Doors open this morning at 9:00 a.m. First lady Sheena Greitens is expected to attend and 115 people are expected to participate in the ceremony.
"It's been a long time coming," Founder of the Missouri Adoptee Rights Movement Heather Dodd said. "It's going to be a very, very emotional occasion for many, including myself."