Campaign to allow parents names to be listed in children's passports
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At passport control around the world I am frequently asked to prove I am the mother of my daughter and aged four she is questioned as to whether I am her mother - all because we don't share the same surname. For reasons of gender equality and women's empowerment I chose to keep my maiden name on marriage. I am not alone. Women are increasingly keeping their maiden names after marriage with one in seven women saying they intend to keep their name after marriage, according to recent research by YouGov. Yet since children still primarily take on their father's surname name, unless a simple change is made to children's passports, this problem is set to continue.
Tulip Siddiq MP for Hampstead and Kilburn recently raised the issue with the Home Office after facing a similar problem (see: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/sep/06/mp-stopped-at-border-over-daughters-name-urges-passports-reform ). The Home Office response was insufficient. They stated "we encourage all parents to make use of the ‘Emergencies’ page in their child’s passport where names and contact details of parents can be written". Simply handwriting a mother's name as an emergency contact in the back of a passport will not solve the problem. This is not accepted by border controls around the world. Instead, they seek official proof such as a child's birth certificate.
To overcome the issue, a simple adjustment to children's passport's can be made. Join the campaign to provide the option for children’s passports to identify the names of their parents or legal guardians to prevent this issue in the future!
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