“In all of us there is a hunger, marrow-deep, to know our heritage — to know who we are and where we came from. Without this enriching knowledge there is a hollow yearning. No matter what our attainments in life, there is still a vacuum, an emptiness, and the most disquieting loneliness.”-
Alex Haley, Author, Roots (1976).
This page contains some basic information and resources for adoption searches in Canada.
OPEN RECORDS BY PROVINCE
Adoption is a provincial matter. Each province maintains their own adoption records. See Adoption Records/By Province on this site to obtain the current situation in your province with respect to open adoption records.
PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT REGISTRIES
Some provincial governments maintain adoption registries. Check your individual province information in Adoption Records/By Province on this website.
Most social service agencies that facilitated the adoption, such as Children’s Aid Societies will provide a narrative from the adoption file known as “Non-Identifying Information”. No identifying information will be included, but often clues to family eg. “the mother had three sisters, ages 6, 8, and 12” or other kinds of information that is not specifically identifying, but that can assist in a search, may be obtained.
Many nonprofit groups provide registries as a volunteer service. Registering with as many registries as possible should be a priority for searchers. It is very important to keep your information up to date on any registry you are using. These are the main registries:
- Origins Search and Reunion Registry
- Canadian Adoptees Registry
- International Soundex Reunion Registry
- Long Lost Family
FOR INDIGENOUS ADOPTEES: STATUS ISSUES
To determine whether an adoptee is entitled to “Registered Indian Status,” you must make an official enquiry to the Department of Indigenous and Northern Affairs.
Send a copy of the adoption order along with a written request to the following address:
Office of the Indian Registrar
Ottawa ON K1A 0H4
ATTN: Adoption Unit
Fore more information see Indigenous 60s Scoop on this website. More information is also available at: