In Part True and in Part Woefully Misleading

by Matthew Eppinette, CBC Executive Director on February 10, 2017

Arthur Lewin-Funke,

CBS Minnesota reports that a group of the state’s legislators has introduced a bill seeking to establish surrogacy in the laws of Minnesota.

Two things particularly worth noting in this story are:

  1. The name of the bill: “Minnesota Gestational Carrier Act.” This is terribly dehumanizing of the women who act as surrogate mothers.
  2. The purpose of the bill: to “streamline the process and protect everyone involved.” This manages to be in part true and in part woefully misleading.

Taken together, then, this bill will streamline the process of dehumanizing women and commodifying children, which of course is completely incompatible with protecting everyone involved. But there is little surprise that when it comes to surrogacy, “everyone involved” doesn’t truly include “everyone.” It really means the attorneys, the clinics, the intended parents, and maybe the surrogate’s finances. And in that order.

What about the health of women who act as surrogate mothers? And as Jennifer often asks, are the children really alright in this?

Jennifer and I both presented educational testimony before the Minnesota legislative panel that last year studied the issue of surrogacy. We emphasized that surrogacy carries risks to women and children, and that contracts and regulations simply cannot protect women and children from all of the harms of surrogacy.

That all remains true.

So we say again:

  • Surrogacy Carries Health Risks that often Go Untold
  • There are Health and Psychological Risks to the Children Born via Surrogacy
  • Surrogacy is Expensive, Risky, and Eugenic, and it Involves Coercion

See “Three Things You Should Know About Surrogacy” for full details, with references, on each of these points.

Image: Arthur Lewin-Funke, “Mother,” Marble, via Metropolitan Museum of Art, Public Domain

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