ALBANY, N.Y. — A new law that went into effect in New York State on Wednesday is making a big difference for adoptees.
Any adoptee who turns 18 years old will have the right to get a certified copy of their original birth certificate.
It passed in Albany by a wide margin, with supporters saying adoptees deserve to get information about their family and medical history.
Governor Cuomo on Friday said more than 3,600 adoptees applied for their birth certificates in the first two days since a state law let them do that.
Pamela Macadlo, 56, of Amherst has wanted that information for most of her life.
"I've be an adult for a long time, and I think it should have been my right to search for my birth parents," she said.
Macadlo was among thousands in New York who filed to get their original birth certificate on Wednesday.
"Every person has the right to know where they come from, and this new law grants all New Yorkers the same unrestricted rights to their original birth records," Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a released statement.
"After years of being denied this basic human right, adoptees will finally be able to obtain critical information about their origins, family histories and medical backgrounds."
If the adoptee is deceased, their direct descendants may request a copy of the adoptee's birth certificate.
Adoptees can request their birth certificate by applying online. Paper applications will also be accepted by mail and in person.
"I don't have to search anymore," Macadlo said. "I know everything I need to know."