Chapter

Birth registration: a tool for prevention, protection and prosecution

Cody Clarie

in Child slavery now

Published by Policy Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9781847426109
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447301714 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847426109.003.0011
Birth registration: a tool for prevention, protection and prosecution

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This chapter, drawing on the experience of Plan International, describes the utilisation of birth registration as a tool to prevent child trafficking. In many countries, failure to register births often happens on a large scale because of a failure of government resources, inadequate administrative procedures, family poverty, a lack of awareness, limited political will, and corruption. Parents are also often discouraged by the prospect of taxation or even by the fear that registered children become, in due course, ‘visible’ for conscription into armies or slave armies. Yet this registration is the key to claiming a host of rights: in a sense it defines the child as existing at all, hence its enshrinement in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (Articles 7 and 8). It opens the way to healthcare, education, nationality, and to the formal labour market. In other words, birth registration can be an effective means of protecting children, preventing sexual exploitation, and prosecuting cases of child slavery.

Keywords: Plan International; birth registration; child trafficking; healthcare; education; nationality; formal labour market; sexual exploitation; child slavery; children

Chapter.  5316 words. 

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