Drawing up architects' register
Madam, – Comments made at the Oireachtas Environment Committee, which the Architects’ Alliance addressed, were confused and incorrect in some regards (May 19th).
The register of architects was introduced under the Building Control Act 2007 and is in place since November 15th, 2009. The register was put in place not merely to protect consumers’ interests: this State and all other EU and four EEA states were ordered to transpose into local law EU Directive 2005/36/EC which regulated the professions of dentists, veterinary surgeons, medical doctors, pharmacists, midwives and architects.
Prior to November 15th, anyone in this State could describe himself as an architect. The title architect had no legal protection.
The EU directive has two principal purposes: first, each state has been ordered to recognise the other states’ agreed qualifications and, second, each state is required to make available practice within its state to recognised professionals of the other states.
This State has provided for nine types of people who may apply to be registered as architects. Those with and without formal qualifications must apply and demonstrate their technical competence to be entered onto the register.
Persons who do not have formal qualifications but who have practised with demonstrable competence for seven years as architects – the “grandfather clause” – may make application for registration. The same procedure and fee applies to all nine types of person. There is no need to introduce a new “grandfather clause” – it’s already there. – Yours, etc.