“Society first acknowledges a child’s existence and identity through birth registration. The right to be recognized as a person before the law is a critical step in ensuring lifelong protection and is a prerequisite for exercising all other rights.” (UNICEF, 2019).

Identity rights include, among others, the right to be registered at birth and have proof of one’s registration such as through a birth certificate. Identity rights also include having a nationality, name and knowing one’s family relations.


Specifically each person has a family history – genetic, gestational, social and legal – that contributes to his or her identity, having a lifetime impact on the child and future generations.

Family relations include connections that arise as a result of this history, continuity or separation, encompassing birth parents, gamete donors, siblings, grandparents and others. In other words, each child has a right to know his or her origins.

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