Manitoba parents concerned with birth registration delays

Tasha Gregory has been waiting for over 6 weeks for birth registration documents for her newborn child. Global News

As a mother of three Tasha Gregory is no stranger to Manitoba’s birth registry system, but the Winnipegger says she’s surprised by how long the process is taking this time around.

Gregory’s two older children received their birth registration in a timely manner, she says, only taking a couple of weeks.

However, when it comes to her new baby boy, she is still waiting on the documents well over a month after his birth.

“He’s six-weeks old and his registration still isn’t even close to the front of the queue,” she said.

Gregory has been on the phone with Manitoba Vital Statistics trying to get answers on where her son’s documentation is at in the queue, but she knows she still has a long way to go.

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“When I called (Manitoba Vital Statistics) last week, they were only on April births,” Gregory said.

“They said to try and call back the last week of August or first week of September.”

After finding out that she would need to wait, Gregory voiced her concerns on Facebook, and found a number of other new parents frustrated with the process.

“That was the most eye-opening part for me was that for so many families have experienced the same delays.”

Hillery Taylor, owner of Winnipeg’s Nest Family Centre,  says she is currently experiencing the same holdups with her nine-month-old child.

Taylor says she has heard from multiple families going through the same delays, including from parents on maternity leave who can’t receive child benefits and the extra income that comes with it, without the documents.

“Some people need that,” Taylor said. “Whether its for childcare, or groceries, it can really add up for a lot of people.”

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In a statement, the Manitoba Government says its processing more than five thousand applications a month, pushing its typical six week processing time to ten weeks.

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Ontario faced similar problems earlier this year.

In February parents were dealing with three-and-a-half month delays to register their baby’s birth.

The delays were so lengthy, the consumer services minister ordered a review of Service Ontario — the arm of the government that processes applications for the documents.

Meanwhile In Alberta, the process takes up to three days.

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