Albany Assemblywoman Amy Paulin (D-88) and Senator Brad Hoylman (D-27) held a press conference today to discuss A.6959/S17, the Child-Parent Security Act (CPSA). They also called upon the Task Force on Life and the Law to issue its report, which has been underway for several years, examining the issues addressed in the legislation. The delay of this report has hindered progress on these issues.
This legislation, which Paulin and Hoylman co-authored, would legally establish a childs relationship to his/her parents when the child was conceived through third-party reproduction, which would include children born through gestational surrogacy arrangements.
It took me years to get pregnant with my second child, and I know from my own experience with infertility, the pain of wanting a child and not being able to have one, Assemblywoman Paulin said. This legislation would help families to avoid some of that pain by removing legal barriers to starting their families in New York. Importantly, the intended parents would be recognized as the legal parents upon the birth of the child, allowing them to be listed on the birth certificate and make decisions for the baby immediately.
One such situation arises when a newborn requires a medical procedure or procedures. Currently questions arise as to who should be granting consent, the donors or the intended parents.
The CPSA will provide clear and decisive legal procedures to ensure that children born through third-party reproduction have secure and legally recognized parental relationships with their intended parents. The law will make it clear that donors do not have parental rights or obligations and that those rights and obligations reside with the intended parents.
"It is well past time that New York's laws be updated to reflect today's modern families," said Senator Hoylman. "As reproductive technologies advance and a new generation of post-marriage equality families begin, it is crucial that intended parents, children, gamete donors, and gestational surrogates alike are able to rely on strong legal protections. The Child-Parent Security Act would create those protections, and I thank Assemblywoman Paulin and the advocates gathered here today for their strong advocacy of this important legislation."
The CPSA would also lift the ban on surrogacy contracts to permit enforceable gestational carrier agreements and sets forth the criteria for such agreements. When all of the requirements set forth in the law are met, the intended parents can seek an "Order of Parentage" from a court, prior to the birth of the child, which becomes effective immediately upon birth.
The requirements are designed to ensure that all parties enter into the agreement on an equal footing and with full knowledge of their duties and obligations.
Additionally, because existing New York laws force couples facing infertility and same-sex couples to go out of state in order to have a child with the assistance of a gestational carrier, the intended parents are overly burdened at a time when they should be feeling as little stress as possible. Many of these couples have struggled for years to have children and forcing them to go out of state for a gestational carrier often makes it difficult if not impossible for them to participate in the pregnancy.
Juan and Heather Cruz spoke about their experience with infertility and how they ultimately had to use a gestational carrier.
Barbara Collura, President and CEO of RESOLVE, The National Infertility Association, also spoke and urged the passage of the legislation.