When proof of identity is required (opening bank accounts etc.) the range of individuals who can certify documents should be broadened.

At present, document certification is allowed only by a narrow band of individuals (doctors, lawyers etc) defined by  their occupation.  If an element of objectivity is the requirement, then the term 'anyone who is not a family member or close friend' would be more appropriate.  Afterall, a doctor or lawyer could be a close friend or family member and, therefore, not necessarily provide the objectivity required.

If honesty is the requirement, there is nothing to say that a bank manager would be more honest than a plumber, a shopkeeper or a neighbour.



Why is this idea important?

I feel this change is important  as:

1. Those on the list of specified occupations may not always be willing to co-operate.

2.  It can be difficult to find people on the specified list of occupations without a lot of fuss. Anyone living on a housing estate, in a small village or in a rural area  may well have difficulty reaching such individuals without a tiresome journey, and without, possibly, having to pay a fee as well.

3. It seems a rather old-fashioned and rather disdainful notion that a doctor , bank manager or a lawyer is somehow more worthy than a neighbour, a shopkeeper or a plumber.  Neither does this classification sit well with notions of 'equality'!

4. One has to question what one is trying to achieve by specifying certain occupations for certification of documents – is it objectivity? honesty? reliability? – and ask why a broader range of individuals, (anyone who is not a family member or close friend) , cannot provide the same service.

5. A broader range of individuals, qualified to certify documents, would facilitate this process for a great many people.







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