Indigenous Australians’ Access to Birth Registration Systems: A Breach of International Human Rights Law?

17(1) Australian Journal of Human Rights 55

35 Pages Posted: 28 May 2013 Last revised: 9 Jan 2014

See all articles by Melissa Castan

Melissa Castan

Monash University - Faculty of Law

Paula Gerber

Monash University - Faculty of Law

Andy Gargett

Independent

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

There are significant numbers of Indigenous Australians who are unable to prove their identity — either because their birth was never registered, or because they cannot satisfy the requirements of the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages for obtaining a birth certificate. The effect is to make such people legally invisible, preventing them from enjoying all the rights of citizenship that the majority take for granted. This article explores whether international human rights law, in particular the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, can help redress this problem.

Keywords: Human Rights, Indigenous, International Law, Birth certificate, birth registration

JEL Classification: K19, K39

Suggested Citation

Castan, Melissa and Gerber, Paula and Gargett, Andy, Indigenous Australians’ Access to Birth Registration Systems: A Breach of International Human Rights Law? (2011). 17(1) Australian Journal of Human Rights 55. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2270787

Melissa Castan

Monash University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3800
Australia

Paula Gerber (Contact Author)

Monash University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3800
Australia

Andy Gargett

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

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