JERUSALEM (AP) – Israel’s Supreme Court on Sunday cleared the way for same-sex couples to have children through surrogate mothers, a move hailed by lawmakers and activists as a victory for LGBTQ rights.
The court ruled in 2020 that a law on surrogacy, which expanded access to single women but excluded same-sex couples, “disproportionately violated the right to equality and the right to parenthood.” and was illegal.
He gave the government a year to draft a new law, but parliament missed the deadline.
The court said on Sunday that “for more than a year the state has done nothing to propose an appropriate amendment to the law, the court ruled that it could not bear the continuing serious human rights damage. by the existing surrogacy agreement ”.
The change in the law is due to go into effect in six months to allow for the formation of professional guidelines, he said.
The Aguda, an Israeli LGBTQ activist group, hailed the move as a “historic landmark in our struggle for equality.”
Ultra-Orthodox lawmaker Aryeh Deri, the country’s former interior minister, wrote on Twitter that the court ruling was another blow to Israel’s Jewish identity and that “most of the nation wants to safeguard the tradition of Israel, preserving the values of the Jewish family ”.
Vice Foreign Minister Idan Roll, an openly gay Knesset member, retorted, “I’m sure most of the nation loves and respects my Jewish family which was created by surrogacy.
Etai and Yoav Pinkas Arad, the gay couple who appealed to court against the surrogacy law in 2010, said the ruling “is a big step for equality not only for LGBTQ people in Israel, but for equality in Israel in general ”.
Under current regulations, Israeli same-sex couples seeking to become parents cannot hire a surrogate and are often deterred by the additional costs of finding a surrogate abroad.
The state had argued that the law was intended to protect surrogate mothers, but the court ruled that a balance could be struck that was not discriminatory.
Unlike much of the conservative Middle East, Israel is generally tolerant of its LGBTQ community. Gay men openly serve in the Israeli military and parliament, and many popular artists and artists, as well as the country’s current health minister, are openly gay. Nevertheless, obstacles – including the lack of civil marriage that would allow same-sex marriage – remain.