Recommendations to continue banning commercial surrogacy in Australia will protect Australian women from being exploited for their eggs and wombs but more needs to be done to stamp out surrogacy in developing nations, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.
ACL spokesperson for women, Wendy Francis, called on the Government and Opposition Party to support the recommendations contained in a report released this week by the Federal Parliament’s Social Policy and Legal Affairs Committee, and to stand against the exploitative practice.
“If the Greens and Labor support same-sex marriage, as they say they do, they need to realise this policy drives demand for surrogacy,” Ms Francis said.
“Same-sex marriage involving two men will, by its very nature and design, mean women outside of the relationship will be exploited and children denied their biological heritage.
“Surrogacy, even when done altruistically, objectifies children and surrogate mothers and creates lifelong emotional issues for both,” Ms Francis said.
“The use of surrogacy is leaving a legacy of damaged and hurt children and mothers.
“No matter how it is framed, surrogacy exploits women for their eggs and wombs and takes away the rights of children.”
Ms Francis said she was disappointed that the Committee was open to considering ideas to make surrogacy arrangements with women in developing countries continue.
“It is hypocritical of the committee to say commercial surrogacy should be banned in Australia while at the same time suggesting Australians should be able to exploit poor women in developing countries,” she said.
“No amount of patchwork tinkering with the legal framework for surrogacy changes the fact that children have the right, wherever possible, to be loved and raised by their mother and father.”
In its submission to the Inquiry ACL said it was opposed to the legislation of surrogacy in any form.
“The practice of surrogacy is inherently unjust to children and exploitative of the surrogate mother,” the submission says.
The ACL called for the prohibition of surrogacy domestically and internationally for Australian citizens and the resourcing of law enforcement.
“The only thing a new-born baby knows is her or his mother and this bond should not be severed unless absolutely necessary,” Ms Francis said.