Archive for January, 2010

Herald Sun – “Non-birth parents can now be named on birth certificates” by Sally Bennett

January 12, 2010 Leave a comment

LITTLE Drew Hardy-Hughes and her two mothers are now legally recognised as a family in Victoria.

Sweeping January 1 changes to the state’s reproductive laws mean that non-birth parents can now be named on birth certificates.

Drew’s parents Eilis Hughes and Kristen Hardy, of Werribee, were among the first lesbian couples to act on the landmark legislation.

The birth certificate of their two-year-old daughter, conceived using a known donor, will now list Ms Hughes as the birth mother and Ms Hardy as the other "parent".

"Symbolically it’s huge," Ms Hughes said. "It says that we are a family unit and no one can dispute that.

"We had to fight to be visible, and it was also insulting to Kristen, who’s done all that hard parenting work, for there to be nothing to say that she is a parent."

Eilis Hughes, Kristen Hary and their daughter Drew

The victory for the gay and lesbian community sparked outrage last year when it was revealed that all couples seeking fertility treatment would be forced to have police checks once the new laws were enacted. The move, designed to ensure that IVF patients are fit to be parents, was condemned as discriminatory and insulting to couples struggling to conceive.

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Sydney Morning Herald – “Gay Adoption Ban to Stay” by Brian Robins

January 8, 2010 Leave a comment

THE State Government has decided not to allow same-sex couples to adopt, ignoring a parliamentary inquiry that said changing the law would ”ensure the best interests of children”.

The Government said yesterday there was insufficient community support to justify new legislation on the topic.

Groups representing same-sex couples denounced the decision, saying an opportunity to redress discrimination had been missed.

”There are very deeply held, divergent views on this issue and that is why a decision on this matter will not be taken at this stage,” the Minister for Community Services, Linda Burney, said yesterday.

Kellie McDonald, of the Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby, said the decision was ”extremely disappointing”. ”If the NSW Government’s primary concern was the interests of the children, it would rectify the discrimination of the NSW Adoption Act,” she said. ”I’m not sure what more can be done.”

The director of the National Children’s and Youth Law Centre, James McDougall, said his organisation had argued to the committee that children, ”particularly children of families without legal recognition, wanted this change”.

Judy Brown, of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, said ”to suggest that same-sex couples may not adopt is, on the basis of all the evidence available, patently discriminatory and simply highlights ignorance and bigotry”.

[Source: Original Article]

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