§ Mr. Kidney
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what progress he has made in establishing a ceremony for the registration of births of children which records the mutual rights and responsibilities of the parents and the state. 
§ Ruth Kelly
The information requested falls within the responsibility of the General Registrar. I have asked him to reply.
Letter from Len Cook to Mr. David Kidney, dated 27 October 2003: 44WSAs Registrar General for England and Wales, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question concerning what progress has been made in establishing a ceremony for the registration of births of children which records the mutual rights and responsibilities of the parents and the state. (134584)There is no specific proposal to establish such a ceremony. However, in January 2001 the Government published a White Paper "Civil Registration: Vital Change" (CM 5355) containing proposals for the reform of the civil registration service in England and Wales. These proposals include the potential for the civil registration service to both provide celebratory services and to signpost other service and information sources. It is intended that the White Paper proposals are taken forward by means of an order under the Regulatory Reform Act 2001. The first phase of this process involves a mandatory public consultation. This was completed on 24 October.