Personal Essays by Gay Dads

"Two Daddies" Are Fighting to Make the U.K.'s Surrogacy Laws Modern and Safe

Surrogacy in the U.K. is bound by a law created in 1985.... and it badly in need of a makeover, say "Two Daddies"

We've had a busy old few months. Talulah recently turned 2 in October, and Katie made the big 14. Life in the Johnson-Ellis household has been far from dull.

Rewind to August and we receive an email asking us to give evidence at one of their "surrogacy evidence sessions," in view of the Surrogacy Law Reform. For those that aren't fully up to speed the UK currently is bound by the 1985 Surrogacy Act, which is in desperate need of a make over to say the least. So there's currently a group of people that come from a varied background - they may be surrogates, Intended Parents (IP's), Lawyers, Clinicians and other surrogacy experts from all corners of the globe. All with one one goal; to hopefully help drive forward and allow the UK Government to review the current laws, challenge them with a view to make the UK a more current and modern environment to create families without risk or challenge.


Obviously we acknowledged the email immediately, to help shape the future for other IP's is something we've always felt passionately about. Our role was to provide the MP's (members of parliament) and the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) our 'lived experience' as two fathers using the UK for our altruistic surrogacy journey, the challenges and obstacles. As we're also embarking on the journey again (and we're newly pregnant!) this was obviously of interest.

The purpose of the day was to give our account of our journey, the challenges and the positives, and also in the room were other parents, surrogates and professionals all keen to share their thoughts on UK surrogacy and the law reform. Tom Daley even gave his account as fathers through US surrogacy and where the laws differ. We had never been to the Houses of Parliament before, so this in itself was a real eye opener, to say we were excited was obviously an understatement. Just getting this far felt an honour and a privilege.

The mood inside the room was positive and friendly, we even met followers of our page that wanted to say 'hi' which was amazing. It was chaired by the MP Andrew Percy along with other MP's, and as you can understand the full details of the agenda are not allowed to be discussed. Whilst our group only had an hour, we covered a variety of topics and gave some heartfelt true accounts. Immediately after our session was another, all set to give true accounts of their experiences. My understanding was the day was a success, if only there was more time for that particular day.

So what happens next? I'd like to think that this will accelerate and the law reform will be debated in no time at all, and all the changes suggested will be auctioned, however realistically the UK is currently battling with a Brexit issue, and this is more than likely taking priority. That said, this year has been very active in terms of setting up this discussion groups and Andrew Percy seems very keen on championing change. The great news is that on 10th December High Court ruled that single persons are now able to obtain a parental order, just one of the over due changes needed in the UK. Therefore more change is surely on the horizon; it has to be.

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