I would think that it depends more on the public records laws in New Hampshire than about the military's internal procedure for the papers. (I do not remember the procedure from when I was discharged, but cannot imagine that the military would treat them as confidential.)

By recording the discharge papers as a part of the official public records in Florida they would be open for public review by anyone and access could not be legally restricted; regardless of the military's procedures.

Another related issue is that of providing access. If the records are open for public review (and there are no copyright issues involved), is it ethical for records managers of public government documents to place restrictions to access based on the requesters stated or perceived intent? I PERSONALLY do not believe that we should except under extraordinary and extremely rare circumstances involving matters of personal safety; but that's another thread in itself. (A rather easy opinion for me to have since to refuse access to public records in Florida is against the law!)

Have a great week everyone, and I wish all US list members a Happy Thanksgiving. Best wishes and God bless to ALL list members.


Curtis Welch
Sr. Records Management Analyst
Pinellas Co. BCC Admin. Services
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509 East Avenue
Clearwater, FL 33756
(727) 464-3315 (Voice)
(727) 464-4951(Fax)