Single parent surrogacy – the government must heed Parliament’s warning – Article published in Bionews

March 26, 2018
Natalie has written a comment piece for this week’s Bionews supporting Parliament’s criticism of the government ‘remedial order’ which will enable single parents, like couples, to apply for a parental order if they conceive a child through surrogacy.

Although the Joint Committee on Human Rights has welcomed the move to eliminate discrimination against single parents and their children, it has criticised the government’s drafting. It has warned that the wording does not fully remedy the discrimination identified by the High Court in its human rights ruling in 2016 since it leaves some biological parents out in the cold.  Those with a new partner and those who can’t prove a permanent separation from their spouse would not be able to obtain any kind of parental order, and so would be denied any legal relationship with their own biological child. That, says Parliament, risks replacing one kind of discrimination on the basis of relationship status with another.

Time is ticking. The changes are scheduled to come into force before the summer recess and there is no time to spare in getting the wording right. Since the government has also been criticised for the delay to date, the message is loud and clear – the government needs to tidy up the proposed new law and do it quickly.

Read Natalie’s full comment piece on the Bionews website.

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