Public Hearing for NYC Vital Records Access
In 2017, The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene passed a rule that restricts public access to birth records to 125 years, and public access to death records 75 years. Although the rule was recently adopted, thanks to your action and support, an amendment is now being considered.
If the amendment is passed, certain direct descendants and other family members will be able to access the birth and death records of their deceased relatives prior to those records becoming public.
The following individuals would be able to obtain copies of birth records (with proof of death):
- Spouse/domestic partner
For those seeking death records the list of qualifying individuals would include:
- Spouse/domestic partner
- Grandchild, great-grandchild, or great-great grandchild
Many of these were noted to be “new” designations and it was stated that the Department would “accept an applicant’s representation” to obtain the certificate. Questions were raised regarding step-relationships and adoptions, which went unanswered.
There will be a public hearing on this amendment later this month, and the NYG&B is gathering as many community members as possible to pack the house and show our support for more access to historical records!
If you are able to join, we would absolutely love to see you there. Make sure to click the "register" button at the top of the page if you plan to attend - that way we'll be able to get in touch with any additional information or updates. Click here to learn how else you can help.
The hearing will be held at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in Long Island City, Queens. The building can be easily reached by subway:
Take the N, Q or 7 train to Queensboro Plaza. Exit through the turnstiles to the south side of Queens Plaza (You will walk on an overpass over the street). Walk east for 2 blocks. You will cross 27th Street. Turn right on 28th Street. NYC DOHMH is the tall glass building on your left.
Take the E, M, or R train to Queens Plaza. Look for the Jackson Ave/Queens Plaza South exit. Walk west one block on Queens Plaza. Turn left on 28th Street. DOHMH is the tall glass building on your left.
Take the G train to Long Island City/Court Sq. Walk northeast on Jackson Avenue for 6 blocks. Turn left on 42nd Road and walk one block. Turn right on 28th Street. DOHMH is the tall glass building on your right.
You can also use this embedded map below to find suitable driving or walking directions from your exact location: