Media Statement by the Queensland Government
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice
The Honourable Jarrod Bleijie
Parents who have experienced a tragic early pregnancy loss will be able to honour the memory of their little one with a new commemorative certificate, issued by the registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages.
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Jarrod Bleijie said the In Loving Memory certificates were designed to provide grieving families with comfort.
“Losing a child before you can even meet them or hold them is heartbreaking for a mum and dad and, until now, there’s been nothing in Queensland to acknowledge that these precious lives ever existed,” Mr Bleijie said.
“One in four Australian families tragically lose a baby through miscarriage and research has found loss acknowledgement and memory creation helps parents who are enduring a tragedy. That’s what these certificates are about.
“The loss of a baby should be mourned but his or her memory should also be cherished and parents will now have something tangible that acknowledges that their little one existed and was loved.”
Mr Bleijie said parents who experienced early pregnancy loss up to 20 weeks gestation would be eligible for the certificates free of charge from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages. There are already certificates available for a pregnancy loss after 20 weeks gestation.
“We know grieving such a loss is very personal, which is why these certificates are optional and come in two different designs that can include as much or as little information as the parents wish,” he said.
“Parents who have lived through a tragic loss in the past will also be eligible for the certificates.
“The certificates’ design and criteria were developed following extensive consultation with parents and grief support agencies and I thank them for their input into what is such a sad and sensitive issue.”
Hervey Bay mum Jodie Tangikara, who knows all too well the pain of early pregnancy loss, lobbied her local Member of Parliament Ted Sorensen for the certificates and was the first to receive one today.
“Jodie and every parent that experiences early pregnancy loss justifiably feels helpless and empty when it occurs. We hope this new initiative brings them some comfort,” Mr Sorensen said.
“The Government listens to Queensland families and we are committed to assisting them wherever we can.”
More information on the certificates can be found online: www.qld.gov.au/bdm