Changes to Vital Statistics Act tabled

Changes to Vital Statistics Act tabled Changes to the Yukon's Vital Statistics Act that will allow same-sex parents to both be registered on their child's birth certificate were tabled in the legislative assembly on Wednesday.

Changes to the Yukon’s Vital Statistics Act that will allow same-sex parents to both be registered on their child’s birth certificate were tabled in the legislative assembly on Wednesday.

The changes come after a Whitehorse couple made a human rights complaint.

Prior to these changes, one half of a same-sex couple would have to legally adopt their own child in order to show up on the document.

The revised act includes definitions for “mother,” “father” and “other parent.”

“The new category of ‘other parent’ is defined as a spouse of the mother or father at the time the child was born,” according to a statement from the Department of Health and Social Services. “Birth certificates and birth registration forms will be changed immediately to enable same-sex parents to register.”

Earlier this year, Health Minister Doug Graham promised to make the changes before the end of this sitting of the Yukon legislature.

In the statement, Graham said the changes were overdue.

“We’re living in a modern society where children are increasingly raised in blended families by single or same-sex parents,” he said.

The Department of Justice is in the process of identifying Yukon laws that need similar updated language.

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