DANBURY, Conn. – Danbury Rep. Dan Carter (R-2) is supporting a bill that aims to protect Sandy Hook families and others after the death of a child. He testified in Hartford on Wednesday in support of a bill that would allow officials to restrict access to death certificates of children in cases that would harm the family.
“We must protect the privacy of Sandy Hook victims whose death certificates contain information that will only fuel the painful media circus in Newtown,” Carter said. “Not only would this proposal prevent journalists from abusing the information on death certificates, such as the location of grave sites, but would reduce the threat of identity theft.”
Currently, anyone can obtain a death certificate by purchasing a copy from a municipality’s town clerk. The bill was inspired by Newtown Town Clerk Debbie Aurelia, who dealt with a flood of media requests after the Dec. 14 shooting at Newtown's Sandy Hook Elementary School that left 20 children and six educators dead. In the statement, Carter said the bill would prevent people from jeopardizing grieving families’ privacy and capitalizing on their grief.
State Reps. DebraLee Hovey (R-112) and Mitch Bolinsky (R-106) also testified in support of the bill. The Public Health Committee will decide whether to continue the bill through the legislative process.
Carter represents the state House of Representative’s 2nd District, which includes parts of Danbury, Bethel, Newtown and Redding. He is the ranking member of the General Law Committee and also serves on the Banks and Energy and Technology Committees.