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Brother And Sister Surrogacy Should Be Outlawed

19 November 2001

Brother And Sister Surrogacy Should Be Outlawed

“The desire to seek surrogacy arrangements between family members may seem unproblematic to some, but is not in the best interests of the child and should be outlawed,” said Party Leader Graham Capill.

Mr Capill is deeply concerned at reports that a surrogacy arrangement might be allowed between a brother and sister. The sister is allegedly going to be paid expenses relating to the pregnancy, such as loss of wages.

“It is not unusual for surrogatees to change their mind after the birth. This is especially likely for women who have not had children. Such a turnaround would be a disaster for the whole family or whanau.”

“The child may well have to cope with a very confusing upbringing. There is a world of difference between a child being raised by the wider family when orphaned or given for adoption, and being raised in these circumstances. The former is not unusual in Maori circles; the latter does not appear to be part of Maori culture.

“It is only one short step between this intimate arrangement and permitting full sexual relations between family members. To reduce the situation to the sister merely acting as an incubator for her brother’s baby, is far too simplistic and fails to recognize the intimate nature of nurturing a child in utero. Hormonal and other physical changes mean the birth mother is involved with the child in a very personal and intimate way. The simple absence of sexual relations does not make it morally acceptable.

“Payment of expenses is the thin end of the wedge. Business regularly classifies certain income as payment for expenses, especially when it comes to matters of taxation. Most commercial surrogacy arrangements overseas actually do the same as that which is proposed in this particular case. Such payment can undermine the pure motives of offering to act as a surrogate,” Mr Capill concluded.

The Christian Heritage Party calls on the government to pass legislation dealing with these complex bioethical situations. The current case is not singular, as these possibilities have been around for some 20 years. CHP is opposed to surrogacy arrangements and would, instead, encourage adoption, especially when there are so many unwanted children - if the abortion statistics are anything to go by.

END

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