SOUTH Belfast Alliance MLA Paula Bradshaw has welcomed the Department of Finance's decision to consider how existing birth certificates can be reissued in Irish.

Finance Minister Conor Murphy confirmed that new documents could be issued, following a written question from Ms Bradshaw. 

Legislation to enable birth, marriage, civil partnership and death certificates to be registered in Irish, or bilingual English and Irish, has been in effect since March 2022. 

“It is a welcome step towards a truly inclusive society that existing birth certificates could soon be reissued in Irish or bilingual English and Irish,” said Ms Bradshaw. 

“The Irish language is an important part of our shared cultural and linguistic heritage and it means so much to many in our society. Whilst it is a small change, it is a hugely significant gesture that signifies respect and allows for an individual's personal preference to be taken into consideration.  

“I am fully supportive of strengthening language rights and I urge the Minister to ensure that new certificates are available to the public as soon as possible.”