Hands off children’s rights

On the draft law against imputed “fake paternity”

This is a text by Beleuchtungs-Gruppe Bremen.

A new draft law from the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Justice is intended to undermine the legal security of young children and mothers. In the event of “residence status discrepancies” between parents, i.e. if one parent has secure residence status in Germany and the other does not, officials from the immigration authorities will in future generally be able to question the “real” parenthood of the father with secure residence status for another five years. In the case of couples who are allegedly not both “socially and genetically” connected to the child, the mother’s residence status – and possibly also the child’s German passport – is to be revoked. This is intended to deprive the rights of both mother and child and threaten with deportation.

This does not comply with international law: the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child has been ratified by Germany and states:

§2 (2) All contracting states [=all states who have signed this] shall take all appropriate measures to ensure that the child is protected from all forms of discrimination or punishment on the grounds of the status, activities, opinions or beliefs of his or her parents, legal guardians or family members.

Article 3 goes on to state the best interests of the child:

(1) In all actions concerning children, whether taken by public or private social welfare institutions, courts, administrative authorities or legislative bodies, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration.

It can hardly be argued that deporting a small child with its mother and separating it from its father is in the best interests of the child.

This is yet another attempt to make German citizenship questionable and removable. The authorities are to be given up to 5 years to withdraw the rights initially recognized by the authorities from the child and the mother.

The proposed law is frighteningly openly racist: it must be stopped! It is an unpleasant reminder of old German traditions: the so-called “Blood Protection Act” of 1935 was intended to prevent and criminalize “mixed marriages”.

Children’s rights must not be sacrificed for the goals of the right-wing political forces. Children need protection and good conditions – all children do. And so do mothers with young children: they need security and support, not racist questioning and disenfranchisement for populist reasons.

Because the authorities seem to be unaware of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, here is Article 7 for you to read:

Birth register, name, nationality

(1) The child shall be registered immediately after birth and shall have the right to a name from birth, the right to acquire a nationality and, as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by his or her parents.

(2) The contracting states shall ensure the realization of these rights in accordance with their domestic law and with their obligations under relevant international instruments in this field, in particular in the case that the child would otherwise be stateless.