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DNA law approved

CAROL MARTINDALE, [email protected]

DNA law approved

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The Grenada Parliament has approved legislation to accept Deoxyribonucleic acid or DNA in court matters relating to paternity.
This provision was among a wide cross section of changes in the 2011 Status of Children Bill which was debated during Friday’s sitting of the House of Representatives.
Prime Minister and Minister of Legal Affairs Tillman Thomas who presented the Bill informed the House that at present the law only provide for using blood samples.
“It is clear we are trying to keep up with the modern medical and scientific testing procedures and this bill is taking us forward,” Thomas said, while highlighting other benefits of the legislation which will apply to all children born before or after the approval of the Bill.
“It focuses on the rights of fathers and once paternity is established the father becomes a joint guardian and has parental rights jointly with the mother.
“The primary purpose of the Status of Children Bill is to reform existing legislation and remove all disabilities of children born out of wedlock and to adequately provide for the declaration of parentage. The law also provides to stop the use of discriminatory words such as illegitimate, unlawful and bastard when referring to children out of wedlock,” the Prime Minister added.
Former Chairman of the Grenada National Coalition on the Rights of the Child Anande Trotman-Joseph said the legislative changes bring the law in line with section 13 of the Grenada Constitution which provides for protection of all citizens against all forms discrimination. (CMC)