The proposed creation of a Special Oireachtas Committee to consider the issue of international surrogacy will ensure all voices are heard before legislation is adopted, a Senator has said. Dublin South Central Senator Mary Seery Kearney said: “Consultation and collaboration will, I believe, overcome the obstacles to international surrogacy and provide a pathway for both forward and retrospective acknowledgment of parenthood for Irish mothers of surrogate born children.
“I welcome reports regarding the creation of a time limited joint Oireachtas committee to address the ethical concerns that arise in relation to international surrogacy. “I, and advocacy groups calling for the provision of a legislative framework for international surrogacy to have a retrospective element, appreciate the concerns that arise. “We all want to ensure that the human rights, interests and welfare of everyone involved in international surrogacy, most especially the children born through surrogacy, are respected. I believe this is possible and have already put forward solutions that could be codified in a comprehensive law.
“Our laws need to encompass the facts that some countries in Europe who banned international surrogacy have found those bans successfully challenged on human rights grounds. “The committee will provide a means by which the complexities can be explored and ethical solutions found. “While it isn’t ideal that the Assisted Human Reproduction Bill is commencing without the inclusion of the international and retrospective elements, the creation of the committee provides an opportunity for the legislators to hear from academics and advocacy groups who are proposing initiatives that are respectful and progressive. “The introduction of outcomes from a special purpose committee at committee stage is a solution that ensures the momentum to comprehensively legislate for assisted human reproduction in all its forms,” Senator Seery Kearney concluded.