Gay parental rights in the US may affect gay people in the UK hoping to use surrogacy in the UK. In this article we explain why.
Republican Chairman Reince Priebus, the Chief of Staff is known to have said:
“the data, the facts, lead to an inescapable conclusion that every child deserves a married mom and dad”
Currently American gay fathers wishing to conceive a child using a surrogate have less restrictions than British fathers due to the US having a much more stable surrogacy set up. The US is far ahead of the UK on rights, although it is also more expensive. Many gay men currently choose the US as the country to create their future family.
With the new President, the rights of gays and lesbians in the US are not guaranteed, and so people are concerned. Is the USA really able to make a u-turn on civil liberties, equality and gay rights? Given the recent temporary ban on Muslims into the US, yes it is.
UK law as it currently stands prevents surrogacy arrangements being agreed, and it is against the law to advertise for a surrogate mother which can make it difficult to find a surrogate unless you use dedicated services such as Surrogacy UK. Due to these restrictions, many British men have to go to the US for their surrogacy requirements.
Interestingly, women seem to have less issues around UK surrogacy and so use international surrogacy in the US far less than their gay male counterparts.
With attitudes and rights in the US shifting, the large number of anti-LGBT staff in office it is believed that the rights of gays and gay parenting in the US shifting. However in the UK this may not be entirely bad news. Now is a great time for the UK to review its outdated laws around surrogacy and bring surrogacy in the UK into the twenty-first century.
Brilliant Beginnings and Natalie Gamble Associates have set up a petition to encourage the government to expedite changes. They are also asking anyone directly affected by this uncertainty to reach out to their local MPs.