FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New York, New York, June 19, 2019
WITH HOURS LEFT IN THE SESSION LGBTQI COMMUNITY CALLS FOR ASSEMBLY VOTE TO LEGALIZE GESTATIONAL SURROGACY IN NEW YORK STATE
In a down to the wire battle for the rights of individuals to make the choices best for their family plan, the New York State Assembly is playing a dangerous game.
Organizations focused on LGBTQI people have called on the Assembly to vote before adjourning today. They have long advocated for the bill and ensured its measures represent the best interests of all parties.
“New York’s family law has not been updated since the 1950s to take into consideration how many LGBTQI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex) couples and individuals build their families,” said board member Brian Esser. The Child-Parent Security Act, which has been passed by the Senate and is supported by the Governor, currently awaits action by the Assembly, will bring New York’s family formation laws in line with the 21st century, legalizing gestational surrogacy agreements and eliminating intrusive and expensive requirements for second-parent adoptions for families who conceive children with the assistance of a sperm donor.
The Child-Parent Security Act establishes extensive protections for surrogates, intended parents, and donors. “This bill has been uniquely crafted to provide a ‘Surrogate’s Bill of Rights,’ a set of legal protections designed to ensure that the person serving as a surrogate has independent legal counsel, health insurance, life insurance, access to supportive counseling, and autonomy to make decisions about her health care,” Esser explained. “No other state offers such extensive protections enshrined in a statue.”
Forcing New York families to travel out of state to have a family with a surrogate, increases the costs, and deprives families of the ability to participate in prenatal appointments and build a relationship with the surrogate. “Surrogacy is already an expensive and stressful process, having to travel to another state only increases that burden,” Esser observed. “And often families find themselves traveling to states that are not known for being friendly to LGBTQI families.”
“Time is running out for the Assembly to follow the lead of the Senate and bring New York law in line with the law of 47 other states, which permit the practice of surrogacy,” added Gabriel Blau, Board Chair. “Failure to bring this to vote before the end of the day sullies the history of support the Assembly has previously shown the LGBTQI community.”
Equality New York (EQNY) is a statewide advocacy organization working to advance equality and justice for LGBTQI New Yorkers and their families.
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