Evidence of identity are essential to access many rights, including obtaining a passport or driver’s license and opening bank accounts. For most Australians, a birth certificate is the first documentary evidence of identity. However, a birth certificate can only be obtained once the birth has been registered, and the births of many Australians, particularly Aboriginal Australians, are not registered when they are babies.
Alison J. Gibberd, Judy M. Simpson,Sandra J. Eades examine factors related to birth registration among Western Australian children born to Aboriginal mothers. Unregistered births were most strongly associated with young maternal age at first birth, remoteness, mothers whose own birth was unregistered and no private hospital insurance. The study suggest that before discharge from hospitals, assistance should be offered to mothers, which could increase birth registrations.