Change the World

Israel: Surrogacy For Singles And Same-Sex Couples Clears Hurdle

On Sunday, the Israeli cabinet of Benjamin Netanyahu approved a bill allowing surrogacy for singles and same-sex couples. The bill is now headed to the Knesset, where it is likely to be passed and become law.


In the complicated world of Israeli coalition politics, this victory couldn’t happen without months of political maneuvering. After the Ministerial Committee for Legislation voted in favor of the bill a few months ago, a political battle ensued between the religious Bayit Yehudi party and the centrist-secular Yesh Atid party who blocked many of each other’s proposals.

In the end, the ministers of center-right Likud, Yesh Atid and left-leaning Hatnuah voted in favor of Health Minister Yael German’s proposal to expand legal surrogacy eligibility beyond traditional heterosexual couples; the ministers belonging to the Bayit Yehudi party voted against, and Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman of the secularist-nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party abstained.

According to Health Minister German, Yesh Atid, a party that represents the secular middle class of Israeli society, will now work to pass it into law as soon as possible.

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Become a Gay Dad

Jewish Agency to Help Cover the Costs of Surrogacy for Gay Couples

Isaac Herzog, of the Jewish Agency's Chairman of the Executive, has made it a priority to support employees family-planning journeys, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

According to an article in the Jerusalem Post, the Jewish Agency for Israel is about to become first state organization to provide financial assistance to gay employees seeking child surrogacy services overseas. The move is intended to help offset the high costs associated with conducting surrogacy abroad.

The move to do so was led by Isaac Herzog, the Jewish Agency's Chairman of the Executive, who has made it a priority to support employees family-planning journeys, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The decision will apply to the agency's roughly 1,250 employees. The loans can be used to help cover the costs of necessary medical procedures before surrogacy, and for the process of surrogacy itself, the article notes.

Last year, in a controversial move, the Israeli government expanded the ability of single women to access surrogacy services in the country, but excluded single men and gay couples from the policy.

Herzog said the following in announcing the new initiative:

"We are also making a symbolic statement, because it reflects the egalitarian stance of a large organization that is recognizing the right of every man or woman to actualize their wish to be parents and to raise a family, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation. The Jewish Agency is one big family, and all its members are equal."

Change the World

Twin Son of Gay Married Couple Recognized as U.S. Citizen by Federal Judge

According to the decision by U.S. District Judge John F. Walter, a child does not need to show a biological relationship to their parents if their parents were married at the time of their birth.

According to Metro Weekly, a federal judge in California has ruled that "a twin son of a gay married couple has been an American citizen since birth, extending to him the same rights and protections that his biological half-brother already enjoyed."

Previously, the U.S. State Department denied citizenship to one of the twins, Ethan Dvash-Banks, whose biological father, Elad Dvash-Banks, is an Israeli national and not a U.S. citizen. Ethan's twin brother, Aiden, was conceived via the same donor egg, but from sperm from a different father, Andrew Dvash-Banks, who does have U.S. citizenship. As a result, Aiden was recognized as a U.S. citizen while his twin brother, Ethan, was not.

The couple worked with LGBTQ legal group Immigration Equality to fight the decision, who helped effectively argue to U.S. District Judge John F. Walter that U.S. law should not require a child to show a biological relationship to their parents if their parents were married at the time of their birth.

Read the whole article here and then check out the emotional video posted by the Dvash-Banks family to YouTube following the decision below:


A Message of Gratitude from the Dvash-Banks Family youtu.be

Change the World

Israel Postpones Vote on Amendment to Allow Gay Men to Access Surrogacy

"There is no limit to the shame and hypocrisy of this government," said Yesh Atid MK Yael German, the sponsor of the amendment, following the committee's decision to postpone the vote.

This past week, Israel's Ministerial Committee on Legislation voted to postpone an amendment to Israel's surrogacy law that would expand state-supported surrogacy eligibility to single men and gay couples. Currently, such support is only granted to married heterosexual couples.

"There is no limit to the shame and hypocrisy of this government," said Yesh Atid MK Yael German, the sponsor of the amendment, following the committee's decision to postpone the vote. "The delay is proof that the prime minister is acting against the gay community."

This development is the latest in the political saga that begun this past summer, when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu voted against an amendment that would have allowed single and gay men to access surrogacy after previously stating he would support it. The move caused thousands of LGBTQ individuals and allies to protest in the streets of Tel Aviv this past summer.

German said, for her part, that she "will not give up," and that she will "call upon members of the coalition to vote according to their conscience and let the bill pass."

Gay Dad Photo Essays

Pics of the Moment Before and After Gay Men Become Dads

Dig through your phones — what was the last pic taken of you BEFORE you became a dad?

We all have THAT photo: the one taken moments after we become fathers for the first time. For some of us, we're doing "skin to skin" in a delivery room. For others, we're standing proudly alongside our newly adopted child and judge in a courtroom. However or wherever it happens, though, we make sure to snap a picture of it.

But what about that last photo BEFORE you first became a dad? What does that image look like, we wondered? Well, we asked our Instagram community to dig through through phones and find out. Some of us are enjoying a last carefree meal or glass of wine, others of us are captured nervously contemplating our futures. Whatever it is, we've decided these BEFORE pictures are just as meaningful.

Enjoy some of our favorites! Want to play along? Dig through your phones and send us your pics to dads@gayswithkids.com!

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Entertainment

Gay Dad in Sundance's 'Brittany Runs a Marathon' is Relatable AF

Sundance hit "Brittany Runs a Marathon" stars a gay dad trying to get in shape.

Who would make for the best marathon training partner for an overweight, overly boozed 27-year-old woman? A gay dad, of course!

The pairing, for any gay man who has been subjected to impossible beauty standards (not unlike... literally all women?) makes a bit too much sense after watching the new Sundance film, "Brittany Runs a Marathon," starring SNL writer Jillian Bell (as the 27-year-old) and Micah Stock as the (somewhat *ahem* older) gay dad.

Based on a true story, the film follows Brittany, an overweight and over-boozed 20-something, trying to clean up her act by training for the New York City marathon — while doing so, she meets Seth (the gay dad), and the two begin to train together, along with Brittany's neighbor Catherine. Each has their own motivation for running: getting one's live together, recovering from a messy divorce, or an attempt to impress one's athletic son. (Which is the gay dad? Guess you'll have to watch to find out!)

We won't give too much more away, apart from saying that the trio — based off of actual people and events — really works. It's the feel good film you're waiting to see.

Expert Advice

Your 15 Most Common Questions About Adoption, Answered by an Expert

We asked our Instagram community for their biggest questions about adoption. Then asked Molly Rampe Thomas of Choice Network to answer them.

As part of our new "Ask an Expert" series on Instagram, our community of dads and dads-to-be sent us their questions on adoption in the United States. Molly Rampe Thomas, founder of Choice Network, answered them.

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Popular

'Life Is Amazing': Congrats to Gay Dads Whose Families Recently Grew!

Help us congratulate gay dads on their recent births and adoptions last month!

Wishing all of these gay dads whose families expanded in the last month or so a lifetime of happiness! Congrats to everyone in our community on their recent births and adoptions!

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