Surrogates Left Holding the Baby as Coronavirus Rules Strand Parents

By Sirin Kale | The Guardian | May 14, 2020

This article features the stories of surrogates, intended parents, and children born through international surrogacy arrangements, whose circumstances have been drastically altered due to coronavirus restrictions. A surrogate in the US was asked by intended parents to look after the newborn after travel limitations made them unable to travel from China. An Israeli gay couple have been stuck in a New Jersey hotel room after flying with their four year-old son to meet their baby born to a surrogate in the US. Now they are unable to fly back to Israel because they cannot obtain the proper travel documents, and face mounting costs from their unexpected lengthy stay.

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American Surrogate: 30 Months Later

By Gregory Warner | Rough Translation, NPR | April 29, 2020

In 2017, NPR ran a story of a Chinese woman who hired an American surrogate, what brought them together, and the challenges in their relationship. The original podcast is followed by interviews of the two women providing updates about their lives during the time of COVID-19.

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Coronavirus Upends Years of Planning for International Adoptions and Surrogacy Births

By Carol Morello | Washington Post | April 16, 2020

As the State Department does not consider surrogacy a life-or-death emergency, this article explores how families are navigating international surrogacy arrangements with travel to the United States, including arranging passports and travel back to home countries.

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The Surrogate is in Oregon. The Parents are in China. And the Baby is in Limbo.

By Libby Dowsett | The Oregonian/OregonLive | April 5, 2020

A surrogate mother in Oregon explains how the COVID-19 pandemic and travel restrictions have drastically changed the birth plan for the child, whose parents are in China. In this article, new questions arise, such as when will the child’s parents be able to come to America and who will be the child’s guardian in the meantime?

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My American Surrogate

By Leslie Tai | The New York Times | September 24, 2019

This article and video tell the story of Qiqi, an entrepreneurial woman from China who has made a name for herself connecting Chinese intended parents with American surrogates. Content warning: This video depicts a live birth.

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Article: The Practical Case for Legalizing Surrogacy

The Practical Case for Legalizing Surrogacy
By Ding Chunyan | Sixth Tone | March 22, 2017

I propose that we legalize altruistic gestational surrogacy — that is, procedures involving a third-party surrogate mother with no biological relation to the child, and who receives no financial compensation for taking on the role. To protect the interests of the surrogate mother, the intended parents, and the surrogate child, the government should establish clear rules specifying the qualifications for both the surrogate mother and intended parents, as well as the conditions for surrogacy, the restrictions on reimbursement, the privacy of those involved, and the child’s right to know of that it was born from the arrangement.

Citing laws that are, in the author’s opinion, “simply not up to the task of solving the current complex tangle of legal and regulatory problems related to surrogacy,” this article chronicles issues facing surrogacy in China. It includes: the rampant use of non-ARTs – not covered by regulation – in surrogacy arrangements; judicial bias towards genetic parentage; precedents set by divorce cases that have not always granted custody to the more “capable” parent; and the rise of entities and a “black market” willing to violate law.

Legalizing altruistic surrogacy is the proposed fix by Ding Chunyan, an associate professor at the Law School of Hong Kong City University, along with the creation of a neutral oversight body. Success, in her opinion, is also pinned on her proposal to ban commercial surrogacy.

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