Statement on Commercial Surrogacy Proposal

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Statement on Commercial Surrogacy Proposal

January 8, 2020

Following is a statement by Kathleen M. Gallagher, director of pro-life activities for the New York State Catholic Conference:

“The push by Gov. Cuomo and members of the state legislature to legalize commercial surrogacy is a dangerous policy that will lead to the exploitation of poor, vulnerable women, and has few safeguards for children.

“The surrogacy legislation is designed mainly to benefit wealthy men who can afford tens of thousands of dollars to pay baby brokers, at the expense of low-income women. Ironically, this push is being made precisely at a time when most countries in Europe, Asia, and elsewhere have explicitly banned commercial surrogacy in response to the assault on women’s dignity that occurred in places where it had become an industry. (See hereherehere, and here)

“The well-being of children is largely an afterthought. There is no state residency requirement nor background checks for individuals or couples buying their way into these parenting relationships. In addition, the legislation explicitly denies any and all rights to babies in utero, stating that they may not be viewed as a ‘child’ under the laws of New York. One is left to assume they must instead be viewed as manufactured products or disposable goods.

“Thankfully, there remain many women, including several influential legislators, who see through the political rhetoric and recognize these arrangements for what they are – a license for victimizing women. We urge them to continue to in resist the pressure from powerful, wealthy voices and continue opposing this bill.”

The Catholic Conference represents the New York State Bishops in public policy matters. Memo of opposition to surrogacy bill here.