Written answers

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

Public Services Card Provision

Photo of Catherine MurphyCatherine Murphy (Kildare North, Social Democrats)
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576. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the policy regarding the issuing of the public services card and persons who are adopted (details supplied); if only certain information is inscribed on the card; if information regarding a person's adoption history or status is inscribed or encoded on the card; if a person has ever been refused a card based on his or her adoption status; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [3940/18]

Photo of Regina DohertyRegina Doherty (Meath East, Fine Gael)
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A Public Services Card (PSC) may be issued to a person who has successfully completed a SAFE 2 identity registration. The person’s Public Service Identity Dataset is verified as part of this process. Adopted people are treated in the same way as other individuals in terms of verification of identity. Name, date of birth, place of birth and mother’s birth surname are generally verified from the birth certificate or, in the case of an adopted person, from an adoption certificate.

Generally, in the case of an adopted person, the details on the birth register will be different to those on the adoption register and not consistent with their current identity.

As my Department has access to the Irish Birth Register the above details can be verified without the need for the individual to physically present a birth certificate, providing that the record can be located on the Register.

However, in contrast, my Department does not have access to the Irish Adoption Register. Accordingly, staff would not be aware of a customer’s adoption status. In such circumstances the individual is asked to bring a copy of their adoption certificate. This requirement is stated clearly in SAFE 2 registration invitation letters and on my Department’s website.

When a person presents for a SAFE 2 appointment without a birth certificate, and their birth registration details cannot be located on the Register, they are asked to contact the General Register Office to obtain same. This could be a birth certificate or an adoption certificate.

The information inscribed on a PSC is laid down in Section 263(1a) of the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, as amended, and consists of the name of that person, the Personal Public Service Number of that person, a photograph of that person, the signature of that person, the issue number of the PSC, and the expiry date of the PSC.

The information encoded on the chip within the PSC is similarly laid down in Section 263(1b) of the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, as amended, and consists of the name of that person, the Personal Public Service Number of that person, the date of birth of that person, the place of birth of that person, the sex of that person, the nationality of that person, all former surnames (if any) of that person, all former surnames (if any) of the mother of that person, a photograph of that person, the signature of that person, the issue number of the PSC, and the expiry date of the PSC.

No information relating to the adoption status of a person is inscribed or encoded on the PSC. No person has been refused a PSC because they were adopted.

I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.

Comments

Susan Lohan
Posted on 2 Feb 2018 3:31 pm (Report this comment)

Regina Doherty's answer is ambiguous; In the final paragraph, the Ministers suggests that the PSC chip holds "the place of birth of that person.... all former surnames (if any) of that person, all former surnames (if any) of the mother of that person, but she has not indicated whether or not the fake details from an adopted person's adoption certificate are used (most of us are recorded as having been born in Dublin, when in fact Dublin is merely the location of the former Adoption Board now Authority, where our adoptions were recorded). Are our original surnames held on the chip or just our adoptive names?

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Posted on 21 Feb 2018 2:25 am (Report this comment)

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