On the 13th of May in the Council Chamber of the City of Vilnius’ local government, the European Foundation of Human Rights (EFHR) is organizing a conference titled “The Spelling of Names and Surnames – Challenges and Decisions.” The aim of the conference is to provide an overview of Lithuanian law in regard to the spelling of names and surnames, as well as the latest court practice (with a focus on the “Pauwels” and “Wardyn” cases). Possible solutions will also form part of the discussion.
During previous parliamentary sessions, Members of Parliament have failed to reach an understanding – and a consensus – regarding the issue of the original spelling of names and surnames. They failed to agree with the decision of the State Commission of Lithuanian Language, as well as other proposed projects, and a final decision has yet to be made on the matter. Meanwhile, the Lithuanian courts are considering the spelling of names and surnames according to the legal acts of the European Union and the European Court of Human Rights. In three cases the District Court of the City of Vilnius has bound Vilnius City Registry Office to inscribe the letter “w” in marital status documents. In a number of cases the court’s decision has yet to be announced.
During the “The Spelling of Names and Surnames – Challenges and Decisions” conference, EFHR representatives will present up-to-date court practice in regard to the spelling of names and surnames. The State Commission of Lithuanian Language will comment on law projects. Further, Dr. Katarzyna Miksza will discuss the value and meaning of surnames. Also, participants who are seeking the possibility to write their name or surname with the original spelling will share their experiences and highlight everyday problems.
The conference will be open to all. EFHR is inviting everyone who is interested to attend, participate in the discussion, and to share their opinions on the issue of the spelling of names and surnames. Representatives of the courts, state institutions, along with social activists, are also invited to attend.
Anyone interested in participating in the conference is requested to register via e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) prior to the 11th of May. We would like to inform all that registration is a requirement.
Anyone who is interested in giving a speech during the conference should contact EFHR before the 9th of May.
The conference will take place on the 13th of May in the building of the local government of the City of Vilnius, in Council Chamber room 2001 (20th floor). The conference starts at 9 a.m, with registration for participants beginning at 8:40 a.m.