Bioethics News

Surrogate mothers strong French reaction against the legalisation

Unlike what tends to happen in other countries, the French reaction to a confusing sentence from the European Court of Human Rights has been rather strong. The sentence would reconcile the use of surrogate mothers, insofar as it imposes the obligation to inscribe the children in the civil registry, against the jurisprudence of the French Appeals Court. In mid-July, an open letter to French president François Hollande was published, to demand that he not support the euphemistically named “GPA” (from the French “gestation pour autrui“) or surrogacy. Among the signatories were well-known figures such as Jacques Delors, Lionel Jospin and several previous ministers or secretaries of state. A famous feminist philosopher, Sylviane Agacinski, also signed. And, should it be necessary, groups as diverse as the coordinator for the right to abortion and contraception and some lesbian groups also lent their support. In the document, they stated clearly that “the contract of surrogacy is against the principle of respect to people, both the woman who carries the child, and the child itself, ordered by one or two people, which develops in the womb of the carrier. “Human beings aren’t things”. There is a “public order” technical criterion  that would invalidate any civil contract on this matter (Foro de la Familia, 2-IX-2014).

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