Praxis Watch

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Missed opportunity to provide for birth registration of every child immediately after birth

National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia adopted the Law on Amendments to the Law on Registry Books on 20 June 2018. The new law will enter into force on 1 January 2019. 


On this occasion, an opportunity was missed to resolve the problem of birth registration of children whose mothers do not possess personal documents. Specifically, two by-laws that regulate the procedure of birth notification and registration in the birth registry book contain provisions that prevent registration of all data on the new-born children immediately after birth, including children’s names, if their mothers do not possess personal documents.

This actually means that these children will not have a birth certificate in the most vulnerable part of their lives and, consequently, they will be left without the possibility to exercise rights to health care or social protection. In Serbia, this problem almost exclusively affects members of Roma ethnic minority and only further aggravates their already difficult position.

During the public debate on the draft law, Praxis requested that a provision be included in the law that would oblige the registrars to register a child in the birth registry regardless of whether child's parents possess personal documents. Unfortunately, this suggestion was not accepted.

For more information, see the announcement.

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Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action