§ MR. SLOAN (Belfast, S.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that a charge of 3s. 7d. is made by the clerks of unions for supplying copies of certificates of births to boys who are desirous of competing in intermediate examinations, while such certificates can be obtained for the sum of 6d. in the ordinary way; and whether, seeing that many boys were debarred from entering the intermediate examinations just held because of their parents' inability to pay the necessary fee, he will consider the advisability of abolishing it altogether in these cases.
Superintendent registrars are entitled to charge a fee of 3s. 7d. for a certificate of birth, except in cases where special statutory provision is made for the payment of a smaller fee. Thus, in cases in which the certificate is required for any purpose connected with the elementary education, or with the employment, of a child, a fee of 6d. is payable, but the hon. Member is mistaken in thinking that certificates of birth can, in the ordinary way, be obtained for that sum. The Commissioners of Intermediate Education inform me that they would welcome any legislation which would have the effect of lowering the charge for certificates of birth for the purposes of their examinations. The question will receive the consideration of the Government when a suitable opportunity arises.