B.C. government refuses comment on father's birth certificate law suit

October 28, 200

VICTORIA (CP) - The B.C. government is refusing to comment on a $6.3 million lawsuit filed by a Nanaimo father who says the government is guilty of discrimination for not allowing his surname to appear on his triplets' birth certificates.

A Health Services Ministry spokeswoman said Thursday the government does not comment on cases that are before the courts. Darrell Trociuk, 39, said he is suing the government for discrimination and-or negligence because he feels it has blocked his attempts to be acknowledged as the father of his three boys.

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled Trociuk, 39, is entitled to be named on the birth certificates of his children Ryan, Andrew and Daniel.

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the section of B.C.'s Vital Statistics Act that prevented Trociuk's name from being on the birth certificate was unconstitutional and gave British Columbia one year to change it.

Trociuk's suit claims the government's actions have caused him "emotional upset, humiliation, degradation and pain and suffering and have caused him to be separated from his children, both physically and emotionally, and the damage and loss caused by this separation can never be recovered."

The children are now eight years old and live with their mother in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.

The children's mother, Reni Ernst, broke off a two-year relationship with Trociuk and moved to Vancouver Island shortly after the triplets were born Jan. 29, 1996.

She used the term "unacknowledged" for the children's father on the birth registration forms.

She does not dispute that Trociuk is the father and accepts regular child support from him.

Trociuk applied through the provincial Department of Vital Statistics to be added to the forms and to have the surnames of the children altered to a joint surname, Ernst-Trociuk. Statistics rejected the application without explanation.

His claim was rejected by the provincial court and B.C. Supreme Court. In a 2-1 split decision, Trociuk's appeal was dismissed by the B.C. Court of Appeal.