In March 2015, we sent to the permanent Bureau a contribution showing that surrogacy is contrary to international human rights law and proposing the creation within the UN of a Convention on the International Abolition of Surrogacy. We also requested to be consulted as part of the current work of the HCCH, in order to represent the views of civil society.
Since our contribution has not been taken into account so far, we ask once again for our arguments to be considered by the Experts’ Group on Parentage / Surrogacy.
We ask for . . .
My name is Vincenzo. I am Italian and I’m gay.
Normally I don’t feel this need to label myself because I think sexuality is simply a detail. On this planet we are men and women — people — that’s all. But on the topic of surrogacy it’s important to specify my sexuality because I must shatter the myth that all gay men are in favor of this horrendous practice.
Recently the Italian movement “Se Non Ora Quando” (translated, “If not now when?) launched a survey to determine what Italians think about surrogacy. It’s no coincidence that Se Non Ora Quando, which is concerned with violence against women, conducted this first-time-ever national survey on surrogacy in my country.
Il mio nome è Vincenzo. Sono italiano e sono gay.
Normalmente non sento la necessità di etichettarmi perché penso che la sessualità sia un semplice dettaglio. Su questo pianeta siamo uomini e donne- persone- solo questo. Ma riguardo al tema della maternità surrogata è importante specificare la propria sessualità perché si deve sfatare il mito che tutti gli uomini gay sono a favore di questa orrenda pratica.
Recentemente il movimento “Se Non Ora Quando” ha lanciato un sondaggio per capire cosa pensano gli italiani della maternità surrogata. Non è una coincidenza che Se Non Ora Quando, che si occupa di violenza contro le donne, abbia condotto questa prima ricerca nazionale, sulla surrogata.
The Government of Western Australia is inviting Submissions for their independent review of the Human Reproductive Technology Act 1991 and their Surrogacy Act 2008. They are due on March 16, 2018.
This is a chance to tell the WA Government to abolish all surrogacy as it constitutes a human rights violation of the women and children involved. At the moment . . .
The Washington State legislature is planning to ring in the new year by violating children’s rights as they consider SB 6037, “The Uniform Parenting Act.”
In discussions on family structure- whether you’re talking about marriage, divorce, or the booming fertility industry- the desire of adults takes center stage. SB 6037 is no different. If you peruse the 55-page bill you’ll discover that any consideration of the rights or needs of children is shockingly absent. But just because the bill fails to acknowledge their rights, it doesn’t mean that children don’t have them.
Here are six reasons why this bill is bad for kids and should be roundly rejected.
Research (Asked for by Women) Finds Most Italians are Against Surrogacy
Crowdfunded Survey: 48% oppose, 41% favor
What do Italians know and think about surrogate mothers? When people talk about it things often get heated, but up until today no one had surveyed opinions regarding the practice, which is banned in Italy. To understand the situation the la Rete Femminista 1 Ottobre [The October 1 Feminist Network], which is made up of Se Non Ora Quando Libere, Rua, Arcilesbica nazionale, Udi, Resistenza femminista, and others, launched a fundraiser with many participants and turned to Istituto Ixè (a market research company).
It is clear, even from the title—Surrogacy: A Human Rights Violation—how Dr. Renate Klein feels about surrogacy. She has spent many years studying, writing, and educating on women’s health, reproductive technologies, and feminist philosophies, and she cofounded Feminist International Network of Resistance to Reproductive and Genetic Engineering (FINRRAGE). This small but mighty book is densely packed with an examination of surrogacy and her objections to the “dangerous and exploitative nature of the surrogacy process.” She boldly and succinctly exposes the dangers and dilemmas of what she calls the “latest frontier of violence against women.”
The United States currently has a hodgepodge of state-level legislation regulating surrogacy. High-profile disputes over surrogate pregnancies demonstrate this is not a workable solution. Regulating surrogacy does not protect women and children. It only commodifies them more.
All surrogacy is cruel to human infants because even so-called “altruistic surrogacy” demands the removal of the neonate from her or his gestational mother when every aspect, every cell, every desire of that neonate, is geared toward being on the body of the gestational mother, to suckle and seek comfort and safety.
When Cristiano Ronaldo confirmed through his Instagram account that he had been the father of twins, he received more than 8 million “likes,” 290,300 articles were published on the subject worldwide, 71,000 of them containing the phrase “very happy.” There was only one thing that did not appear anywhere: the mother’s name. Who was she? How was her pregnancy and how did she feel after birth? How many times a day does she think about her children that she might not see again? Ronaldo does not mention it, and the only thing that is known about her is that she is an American citizen and that she received €200,000 for the babies.
Cuando Cristiano Ronaldo confirmó a través de su cuenta Instagram que había sido padre de dos mellizos, recibió más de 8 millones “me gusta”, 290 300 artículos fueron publicados sobre el tema mundialmente, 71 000 de ellos conteniendo la frase “muy feliz”. Sólo había una cosa que no apareció en ninguna parte: el nombre de la madre. ¿Quién es? ¿Cómo fue su embarazo y cómo se siente tras el parto? ¿Cuántas veces al día piensa en sus hijos que nunca más verá? Ronaldo ni la menciona, y la única cosa que se sabe de ella es que es norteamericana y que recibió 200 000 euros por los bebés.
Quando Cristiano Ronaldo ha confermato, attraverso il suo account Instagram, che era diventato padre di due gemelli, ha ricevuto ben 8 milioni di “mi piace” e sono stati pubblicati nel mondo 290, 300 articoli sul tema. 71,000 di questi contenevano la frase “molto felice”. C’era solo una cosa che non è mai apparsa: il nome della madre. Chi? Come era stata la sua gravidanza? come si sentiva dopo la nascita? Quante volte al giorno pensava al bambino che non vedrà mai più? Ronaldo non l’ha mai menzionata e l’unica cosa che si sa è che è americana e che ha ricevuto euro 200,000 per i due bambini.
About the Book
Surrogacy is heavily promoted by the stagnating IVF industry which seeks new markets for women over 40, and gay men who believe they have a ‘right’ to their own children and ‘family foundation’. Pro-surrogacy groups in rich countries such as Australia and Western Europe lobby for the shift to commercial surrogacy. Their capitalist neo-liberal argument is . . .
My name is Gary Powell. I have been an advocate for gay, lesbian and bisexual equality since my late teens. I also oppose surrogacy: both commercial surrogacy, and so-called altruistic surrogacy. I do not believe . . .
There are obvious similarities between the breast milk and surrogacy trades. The surrogacy trade is rife in Cambodia, and feminists and other human rights campaigners have been pressuring the government to clamp down on the baby market.
My fixer, a local journalist named Kalliyan, tells me about the surrogacy trade in the poor areas of Phnom Penh, and I realize the recruitment process and targeting of desperate, impoverished women is the same as that for breast milk.
[Madrid, 26 April 2017] An international panel of #StopSurrogacyNow campaigners were in Madrid this April, to meet with decision-makers and NGOs, and raise awareness on the need for a global abolition of the practice of surrogacy. Through a public event featuring the screening of the documentary Breeders: A Subclass of Women?, they shared their experience, vision, and recommendations with regards to this new form of commodification of women’s and children’s body. Together with EWL national coordination LEM, they also met with . . . [continue reading . . .]
FECHA Y HORA
mié., 26 de abril de 2017
19:00 – 21:00 CEST
MEEU (Madrid Espacios y Eventos Urbanos)
Estación de Chamartín
The documentary film Breeders: A Subclass of Women? (Criadoras: ¿Una clase inferior de mujeres?) will be shown with Spanish subtitles (con subtitulos en español). A panel discussion will follow the film screening.
MADRE DE ALQUILER EXPLOTADA POR UNA PAREJA ESPAÑOLA VISITA ESPAÑA: LOS VIENTRES DE ALQUILER SON EXPLOTACION, LA PRACTICA DEBERIA CONTINUAR REGULADA COMO ILEGAL
***COMUNICADO DE PRENSA*** LAS FEMINISTAS INTERNACIONALES ESTAN ALARMADAS POR LA RAPIDA EXTENSION DE LA GESTACION SUBROGADA Y LA EXPLOTACION COMERCIAL DE LAS DONANTES DE OVULOS — LA COMPRA Y VENTA DE NIÑOS ES ILEGAL EN MUCHS PARTES DEL MUNDO — SE CELEBRARÁ UNA RUEDA DE PRENSA EL 26 DE ABRIL DE 2017 A LAS 18:00 EN MEEU SALA FILME 02 (ESTACIÓN DE CHAMARTÍN, PRIMERA PLANTA S/N) PARA SOLICITAR QUE EL GOBIERNO ESPAÑOL NO LEGALICE ESTA PRACTICA QUE VA EN AUMENTO Y QUE DAÑA A INNUMERABLES MUJERES Y NIÑOS POR TODO EL MUNDO.
U.S. Surrogate Mother Exploited by Spanish Couple Visiting Spain: Surrogacy is Exploitation, Practice Should Remain Illegal
***MEDIA ADVISORY*** LEADING INTERNATIONAL FEMINISTS ALARMED BY THE DRAMATIC SPREAD OF GESTATIONAL SURROGACY AND COMMERCIAL EGG FARMING — BUYING AND SELLING CHILDREN, WHICH IS OUTLAWED IN MANY PARTS OF THE WORLD — WILL HOLD A NEWS CONFERENCE ON APRIL 26, 2017, AT 6:30PM AT MEEU SALA FILME 02 (CHAMARTÍN STATION, FIRST FLOOR) TO DEMAND THAT THE SPANISH GOVERNMENT TAKE ACTION ON THIS GROWING PRACTICE THAT HARMS COUNTLESS WOMEN AND CHILDREN AROUND THE WORLD.
Last month we alerted you to a meeting in Rome put together by “Se Non Ora Quando? – Libere” (transl: “If Not Now When? – Free”), an original organizational signer of our Stop Surrogacy Now Statement.
The international meeting in Rome, held on 23 March, presented a request to the United Nations bodies, in order to address the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) (and of child and human rights), to create a procedure aimed at recommending the practice of surrogate motherhood to be prohibited as incompatible with the respect of human rights and women’s dignity.
The meeting garnered international attention, including . . . [continue reading]
Over the years the Italian group “Se Non Ora Quando? – Libere” (transl: “If Not Now When? – Free”) has campaigned against femicide and violence against women, and has started an important campaign to reaffirm the social and political power of motherhood, aiming to create a new shared common sense around motherhood and advocating the empowering of gender difference.
Our “Trading on the Female Body” event on Tuesday in New York was a terrific success. Before the event even started, we had to bring in more chairs. We ended up with people standing in the back and sitting on the floor down the sides.
Both panels did a wonderful job, the audience was engaged, and interesting, probing questions were asked. The online audience was also very engaged, sending thumbs up, angry face, and heart emojis as each person spoke.
But you don’t have to take our word for it.
We are hosting a global conversation on surrogacy, “Trading on the Female Body,” in New York City on Tuesday, March 14 from 1:00 to 3:00 PM EDT.
For those who aren’t able to join us in person in New York, we will broadcast the event live on our Facebook page, and we will archive the day’s video on Facebook and our website. One way or another, please plan to join us!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
U.S. FALLS BEHIND IN PROTECTING WOMEN AND
CHILDREN FROM COMMERCIAL EXPLOITATION
Leading international feminists and bioethicists, alarmed by the dramatic spread of gestational surrogacy and commercial egg farming in the U.S.—buying and selling children is outlawed in many parts of the world—will hold a news conference on…
StopSurrogacyNow invites you to a global conversation on surrogacy. Surrogacy is an international problem that demands an international solution. Come and learn about how we can work together to Stop. Surrogacy. Now.
Tuesday, March 14, 2017 from 1:00-3:00pm
The Benjamin Hotel 125 East 50th Street, New York, NY 10022
Original Signers of the Stop Surrogacy Now Statement Julie Bindel, Ruchira Gupta, Jennifer Lahl, Pierette Pape, and Kathy Sloan will speak. They will be joined by surrogate mothers harmed by surrogacy. Jessica Kern, who was born of surrogacy, will speak as well.
The sixty-first session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW61) will take place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 13 to 24 March 2017.
Please join us!
Tuesday 14 March 2017
1:00pm – 3:00pm
Julie Bindel—an original signer of the Stop Surrogacy Now statement who is a journalist, author, and human rights campaigner—has recently been interviewed on surrogacy by radio programs in Australia and the United States.
I recently gave birth in Greece as a surrogate. I gave birth to twins — a boy and a girl . . . I just want to get information out to others about what really happens in surrogacy.
Lahl: How did you find the #StopSurrogacyNow Coalition?
Marie: I found your site when I was looking for help on the internet. I got no help in Greece because the law is on the parents’ side.
Government of Gujarat SealGujarat is the site of almost half of India’s surrogacy market and is known by its critics, of which I am one, as a giant “baby factory.” I traveled to Gujarat last year to investigate the surrogacy market, arriving only days after the Indian government ordered fertility clinics to stop surrogate-embryo transfers for those without Indian passports.
Posing as an infertile woman desperate for a baby, I visited clinics, claiming to have a husband with an Indian passport. The five clinics I visited offered surrogacy, and a representative in each clinic told me business would suffer as a result of the government directive. No one mentioned my age (I am 54) or asked any questions about my husband or our family life. It would appear that in the world of designer babies, it is . . . [continue reading…]
Julie Bindel, an original signer of the Stop Surrogacy Now statement who is a journalist, author, and human rights campaigner, traveled from her home in London to California’s San Francisco Bay Area in order to work with The Center for Bioethics and Culture (CBC), an organizational signer of the statement. Julie joined CBC Founder & President Jennifer Lahl for An Open Conversation on Surrogacy at the CBC offices on Friday, November 11.
The conversation was broadcast live on Facebook, and the recording is now available to view via both Facebook and YouTube . . . [continue reading…]
As you know, the report appended to this recommendation was rejected by 19 votes to 17 by the PACE Social Affairs Committee.
We ask you, as well as all the members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, to reject that recommendation and to defend the rights of women, in particular the most vulnerable . . . [continue reading…]
On September 13, Jennifer Lahl, the Founder and President of The Center for Bioethics and Culture and an original signer of the #StopSurrogacyNow Petition, testified by phone before the Minnesota Legislative Committee on Surrogacy. The committee is holding a series of meetings on the issue this summer, and this meeting focused on the medical and psychological risks of surrogacy to women and children. The Center’s Executive Director, Matthew Eppinette, testified to the committee in July, and you can read his testimony here.
Dear Members of the Minnesota Legislature,
Today I’ve been asked to bring my expertise to clarify the medical and psychological risks for surrogate mothers, and to explain the process it takes for these women to get pregnant. . . . [continue reading…]
The Government of India just announced passage of its long-awaited new law on surrogacy. There is much to applaud for surrogacy opponents and abolitionists, but major issues remain concerning its enforcement and questions abound on its particulars. First, the good news . . . [continue reading…]
Help Stop the Collusion between the US Government and the Fertility Industry to Legalize International Surrogacy
The US State Department is holding a public meeting to discuss a questionnaire prepared by the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law on international parentage and surrogacy. The purpose of the meeting is to obtain the views of concerned stakeholders on the questions presented in the questionnaire. A copy of the questions will be provided to meeting participants.
Opponents of surrogacy can and MUST participate and make their voices heard!
- What: US State Dept. public meeting on questions of international parentage and surrogacy
- When: Tuesday, September 13, 2016 from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm EST
- Where: Participate by telephone (the meeting will be in Washington, DC)
- How: Email firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain the call-in number
Update from Minnesota, USA
During the 2016 legislative session, Minnesota successfully established a surrogacy commission to examine the many complex issues relating to surrogacy. The Commission held its first meeting in June and is now gearing up for a series of meetings that will be held in the coming months . . .
Update from Sweden
Stockholm UN Association has taken note of the final report of the government Committee on Expanded Opportunities for the Treatment of Involuntarily Childlessness, SOU 2016: 11, and hereby submit our consultation response.
. . .
We are seeking contributions for a new global collection of first-person accounts by women who were surrogate mothers. The book will be edited by Melinda Tankard Reist (Australia) and Jennifer Lahl (US), and will be published by Spinifex Press for release in late 2017. We would be grateful if you could share this invitation through your networks. [continue reading…]
We want to alert you to a new journal: Dignity: A Journal on Sexual Exploitation and Violence. It is edited by Dr. Donna M. Hughes of the University of Rhode Island, an original signer of Stop Surrogacy Now Statement.
The journal welcomes first-person narratives on what you have experienced or seen, book reviews, scholarly articles, literature reviews, and editorials as described here. [continue reading…]
Hon. John Bel Edwards
Office of the Governor, State of Louisiana
PO Box 94004
Baton Rouge, LA 70804-9004
Dear Governor Edwards,
We are women and men of diverse ethnic, racial, religious, cultural, sexual orientation and socio-economic backgrounds from all regions of the world. We come together to voice our shared concern for women and children who are exploited through surrogacy contract pregnancy and ask you to veto HB 1102. [continue reading…]
Hello, can you hear me? You have such a big following, and when you offered to serve as the surrogate for a newly engaged couple at your concert in Denmark, I was troubled. [continue reading…]
The Australian House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs says commercial surrogacy should remain illegal in Australia. [continue reading…]
Jennifer Lahl, President and Founder of The Center for Bioethics and Culture Network, applauds The Council of Europe’s decision to ban rather than regulate surrogacy. “This is the correct position to take on the matter of surrogacy: not to regulate, which tacitly condones the practice, but to prohibit it altogether.” [continue reading…]
Remarks by journalist and author Eva Maria Bachinger, presented at the conference Vers l’abolition de la GPA (toward the abolition of all surrogacy)
To have children is no longer dictated by nature. Medicine and science are able to fulfill almost any desire and make nearly everything possible. Everybody can have a child–has even a so-called right to a child–it does not matter in what kind of relationship he or she lives. Everything can be planned and controlled, and seems to be safe.
Of course this is an illusion, but one our society believes in. Therefore I think the reproductive medicine and genetic diagnostics are only symptoms of the ruling thinking that says: “everything is possible.” Everything is for sale–so also the desired child.
Remarks by author, political scientist, and philosopher Dr. Regula Stämpfli, presented at the conference Vers l’abolition de la GPA (toward the abolition of all surrogacy)
Abstract: The core question in surrogacy is: Is it a technical critique or a political one? Should surrogacy be forbidden because so many women and children are exploited etc., or because it is a political question of using other people’s organs and lives for money? Surrogacy is all about selling and buying human flesh. Surrogacy is one part of the process that humans have become capital rather than owning capital.
We cannot regard surrogacy as a gesture of freedom or love.
In Italy the practice is illegal, but in our world the ‘elsewhere’ is here: Italian “customers” can choose from various countries to find a woman’s belly that will “carry” a child for them. We cannot accept – simply because it is technically possible, and in the name of alleged individual rights – that women should once again become disposable objects – objects that are no longer at the disposal of the patriarchy, but of the market. We want surrogacy to be banned. [continue…]
Noi rifiutiamo di considerare la “maternità surrogata” un atto di libertà o di amore.
In Italia è vietata, ma nel mondo in cui viviamo l’altrove è qui: “committenti” italiani possono trovare in altri paesi una donna che “porti” un figlio per loro. Non possiamo accettare, solo perché la tecnica lo rende possibile, e in nome di presunti diritti individuali, che le donne tornino a essere oggetti a disposizione: non più del patriarca ma del mercato. Vogliamo che la maternità surrogata sia messa al bando. [continuare…]
Submissions to this Inquiry are due on 11 February 2016, preceded by an earlier email in which you must declare your intention to send a Submission by 1 February 2016. Submissions need to be sent to email@example.com or can be lodged via the Committee website. Click here to read more.
Jennifer Lahl, President and Founder of The Center for Bioethics and Culture Network, submitted a public comment to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (Department of Health Research) of the government of India on the proposed Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) Bill currently under consideration there. Read her public comment here.
By Gary Powell, LGBT activist, public administration campaigner, and original signer of the Stop Surrogacy Now statement, United Kingdom. Read his statement here.
A number of studies and reports examine the effects of surrogacy on women, children, families, and society. We are gathering them here.
Over the past few years a number of films, both documentary and narrative, have focused on the issue of surrogacy. Find our more here.
A two-page PDF overview, with references, on the issues that arise when using third party reproduction techniques such as surrogacy. Click here to download.
Hague Conference: Feminists for the Abolition of Surrogacy
The European Women’s Lobby (EWL), the Center for Bioethics and Culture (USA), the French « Collectif pour le Respect de la
Personne » ( CoRP), and several associations backed by European and American personalities are calling for the abolition of the baby business called euphemistically “surrogacy.”
These associations joined together to involve themselves in the works on transnational surrogacy, which have been hidden from public scrutiny by the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH).
The HCCH is a major actor in the making of international law. It will decide whether its member states accept to work on a future text for shaping international law in relation to transnational surrogacy, and particularly, legal parenthood and the legal status of the child in surrogacy. Its goal will be to try and facilitate the mutual recognition of parenthood from surrogate mothers’ contracts.
The signatory associations denounce this completely unacceptable way of promoting surrogacy without consulting the civil society. They recall that surrogacy is a practice of exploitation contrary to International Human Rights. They propose the writing within the UNO of a convention for the abolition of surrogacy made on the model of the abolition of slavery.
Full text in English: https://collectifcorp.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/surrogacy_hcch_feminists_english.pdf