A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove...but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child. --Forest E. Witcraft

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Legally Required - NOT

Today I did receive a call from the Urgent Care supervisor after last night's incident.  He was very apologetic about how things were handled and wanted to be sure to understand my side of the story.  I walked him through line by line.

At first he was upset about the way the questions were asked, not necessarily about the fact that they were asked.  I focused him back on my original question: Is it your policy to ask ALL parents if their child is adopted?  If not, asking purely based on appearance is unacceptable.

The supervisor stated that they needed to make sure that an adult has the right to seek treatment for a given child; that is why they request the adoption paperwork.  I told him I understood that they needed to confirm that, and if there was a statement or a document that caused question, I could understand them asking for proof.  I said what I don't agree with is asking for proof based solely on looks.  I stated I was fairly sure that if my daughter looked like me, the questioning would have stopped with "Are you mom?" 

I told him that I am also a foster parent and am fully aware that I need to care proof that I can seek medical treatment for my foster children, because I am NOT mom.  I stated that I didn't feel the need to carry proof for my daughter who was adopted over nine years ago.

He then said I should be carrying proof, that it was state law.  I asked him to reference the law.  He indicated my adoption paperwork should have indicated that I needed to carry it with me.  I told him my adoption paperwork says that this child is now legally my child with all the rights and responsibilities as if she had been born to me.*  He said he would have to get back to me, but that he would call me tomorrow.

He told me he was going to provide additional training to the employee involved and that he would be revisiting their policy on this issue.  I suggested that, barring warranted suspicion, after the answer is "Yes" to "Are you mom?", no more questions should be asked, regardless of how the family looks. Perhaps to cover themselves, they should have all parents sign a check-in document that states they are legally allowed to seek treatment for this child.  I told him I have signed such a document at another nighttime pediatric urgent care that I have used on several occasions.  He liked that idea and thanked me for the suggestion. 

I then went one further and told him that if there was a legitimate reason to ask for proof, they should be asking for a birth certificate, not adoption paperwork.  The birth certificate has my name and my daughter's name and could be asked for when it was not an adoptive parent as well.  I said I did not feel the need to bring out my daughter's adoption paperwork (and references to her birth name and parents in front of her) to prove I am her parent.  Yes, she knows she is adopted, but all those details don't need to be shared just to get a physical.

The supervisor said he understood my perspective and it was time to update their policy.  I thanked him and said that was my goal when I called last night.  Times have changed.  I told him I looked forward to his next call with the answer to the "law" he referenced.

Perhaps all that happened was for a good reason.  Now, if I can just get her a physical before school registration on Thursday!

*Upon further investigation, my adoption order simply says this adult and minor child "shall and do bear toward each other the relationship of parent and child."  However, I specifically remember the judge using the language above during the adoption hearing.


  1. YOU GO GIRL! I am pumped reading this! I have always loved you but I love you even more after reading these last two posts. I completely agree with you!!!

  2. i think he is still just making up stuff as to not admit that the employee was totally wrong and actually acting a bit racist. probably worried about getting sued i suppose.