Posted by Sissy Vovou

We are women and men of diverse ethnic, religious, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds from all regions of the world. We come together to voice our shared concern for women and children who are exploited through surrogacy contract pregnancy arrangements.

Together we affirm the deep longing that many have to be parents. Yet, as with most desires, there must be limits. Human rights provide an important marker for identifying what those limits should be. We believe that surrogacy should be stopped because it is an abuse of women’s and children’s human rights.

Surrogacy often depends on the exploitation of poorer women. In many cases, it is the poor who have to sell and the rich who can afford to buy. These unequal transactions result in consent that is under informed if not uninformed, low payment, coercion, poor health care, and severe risks to the short- and long-term health of women who carry surrogate pregnancies.

The medical process for surrogacy entails risks for the surrogate mother, the young women who sell their eggs, and the children born via the assisted reproductive technologies employed. The risks to women include Ovarian Hyper Stimulation Syndrome (OHSS), ovarian torsion, ovarian cysts, chronic pelvic pain, premature menopause, loss of fertility, reproductive cancers, blood clots, kidney disease, stroke, and, in some cases, death. Women who become pregnant with eggs from another woman are at higher risk for pre-eclampsia and high blood pressure.

Children born of assisted reproductive technologies, which are usually employed in surrogacy, also face known health risks that include: preterm birth, stillbirth, low birth weight, fetal anomalies, and higher blood pressure. A surrogate pregnancy intentionally severs the natural maternal bonding that takes places in pregnancy—a bond that medical professionals consistently encourage and promote. The biological link between mother and child is undeniably intimate, and when severed has lasting repercussions felt by both. In places where surrogacy is legalized, this potential harm is institutionalized.

We believe that the practice of commercial surrogacy is indistinguishable from the buying and selling of children. Even when non-commercial (that is, unpaid or “altruistic”), any practice that subjects women and children to such risks must be banned.

No one has a right to a child, whether they are heterosexual, homosexual, or single-by-choice. We stand together asking national governments of the world and leaders of the international community to work together to end this practice and Stop Surrogacy Now.

#StopSurrogacyNow: Add Your Name to the Petition

I Individual Signatories:
Kathleen Sloan
Feminist leader, activist, and author USA
Phyllis Chesler, Ph.D.
Emerita Professor of Psychology, Feminist activist, Scholar and Author of, Sacred Bond: The Legacy of Baby M
Marjorie Murphey Campbell, J.D. Founder of USA
Renate Klein, Ph.D.
Biologist, social scientist, and coordinator FINRRAGE (Feminist International Network of Resistance to Reproductive and Genetic Engineering)
Ruchira Gupta
Founder and President, Apne Aap Women Worldwide India
Jennifer Lahl
Founder and President of the Center for Bioethics and Culture Network USA
Janice G. Raymond, Ph.D.
Professor Emerita University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and author of Women as Wombs: Reproductive Technologies and the Battle Over Women’s Freedom
Kajsa Ekis Ekman
author of Being and Being Bought – Prostitution, Surrogacy and the Split Self Sweden
Jessica Kern
Product of a surrogate pregnancy USA
Sylviane Agacinski
Feminist philosopher, author of Corps en Miettes France
Gail Robinson “Surrogate” Mother USA
Michel Onfray Philosopher and Writer France
Farida Akhter
Women’s rights and health activist Bangladesh
Tanya Lynn Surrogate mother USA
Gary Powell
LGBT activist and public administration campaigner United Kingdom
Elisa Anne Gomez surrogate mother USA
Donna Hughes
Eleanor M. and Oscar M. Endowed Chair in Women’s Studies, University of Rhode Island
Helen Alvare, J.D.
Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law USA
Gaëlle Cariati
graduate student in International Relations from University of Calabria Italy

Julie Bindel,
Writer, author, broadcaster, and feminist campaigner against violence against women and children
United Kingdom
Deborah Hornstra
M.A. Health Advocacy, Sarah Lawrence College
Gertrud Åström
Gender equality expert, feminist activist, president of the Swedish Women’s Lobby Sweden
Lord David Alton
Member of British Parliament United Kingdom
Matthew Eppinette
Executive Director, The Center for Bioethics and Culture USA
Robert Oscar Lopez, Ph.D.
President of the International Children’s Rights Institute USA
Alana Newman
Founder of The Anonymous Us Project and Advocate for Donor-Conceived People USA
Charles C. Camosy, Ph.D.
Associate professor of theological and social ethics, Fordham University USA
Christopher White
Director of Research and Education, The Center for Bioethics and Culture USA
C. Ben Mitchell, Ph.D.
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Graves Professor of Moral Philosophy, Union University
Evan Grae Davis
Filmmaker and director of It’s a Girl USA
Katy Doran
Donor Conceived Activist USA
Matt Doran
Founder of the free social network:
Donor Conceived Advocate Connecting Biological Family and the Community USA
Claudia Corrigan D’Arcy
Board Member of Adoption Rights Coalition USA
Jeffrey M. Togman, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Political Science and Film at Seton Hall University Director of the film We’re Not Blood
Cathi Swett, J.D.
Attorney and Adult Adoptee Advocate USA
Mirah Riben
Author of The Stork Market: America’s Multi-Billion Dollar Unregulated Adoption Industry USA
Miriam Grossman, M.D.
Adolescent and adult psychiatrist and women’s health activist. Author of Unprotected and You’re Teaching My Child WHAT?
Melinda Tankard Reist Writer, feminist, activist Australia
Nkechi Asogwa, M.D.
Doctors Health Initiative Nigeria
Adesuwa Onyenokwe
Publisher and Editor in chief
of TW Magazine
( Nigeria
Ego Egonu, M.D.
 Physician, Derry Clinics Nigeria
Sanjay Khanna
Convener, Socio-Economic Welfare Society India
Babita Khanna
Gen. Secretary, Socio-Economic Welfare Society India
Lalit Pasricha
Project Coordinator, Socio-Economic Welfare Society Canada
Eliette Abécassis
Writer, author of Qumran and La Répudiée, which inspired Amos Gitai’s film Kadosh France
Johanna Langhorst Reporter
Eberechukwu Okey-Onyema
Executive Director, Healthy Living and Women Empowerment Initiative Nigeria
Annika Lundegårdh, R.N.
Nurse and President of the Women’s Committee of the Centre Party in Uppsala Sweden
Nina Björk Author Sweden
Ebon Kram Chairman Sweden
Erika Beckman
Chairman, National Organization Against Sexual Abuse Sweden
Jane Eriksson
Vice-Chairman, National Organization Against Sexual Abuse Sweden
Yvonne Hirdman
Professor of Women’s History at the Gothenburg University Sweden
Karin Svensson
Chairwoman, Roks, The National Organization for Women ́s Shelter and Young Women ́s Shelter
Ebba Witt-Brattstrom
Author, Feminist, and Professor in Nordic Literature, University of Helsinki Finland
Nina Rose, M.D.
Vice President, Swedish Women Doctor’s Society Sweden
Caroline Norma, Ph.D.
Lecturer in Urban and Social Studies, RMIT University Australia
Jorunn Friis Reset
Organisational secretary, Women’s Front Norway
Helen Pringle, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer in the School of Social Sciences, University of New South Wales Australia
Seyran Duran
Chairman of the Kurdistan Women’s Association in Sweden Sweden
Ruth Nordström
President of Scandinavian Human Rights Lawyers Sweden
Rebecca Ahlstrand
Attorney, Scandinavian Human Rights Lawyers Sweden
Maria Mies, Ph.D.
Founding member of FINRRAGE (Feminist International Network of Resistance to Reproductive and
Genetic Engineering)
Shagufta Omar
President, Pakistan Chapter of the International Muslim Women Union General Secretary, Women’s Aid Trust
Mia Fahlén, M.D.
Senior Consultant Surgeon Sweden
Ana Reis, M.D.
Feminist physician, Former representative of FINRRAGE Brazil
Viviane Teitelbaum
President, European Women’s Lobby Belgium
Myfanwy Cummerford
Donor conceived advocate and Founder of TangledWebs Australia
Isla MacGregor Tasmanian Public Interest Advocate, Whistleblowers Tasmania Australia
Simone Andrea
Survivor of Prostitution, Director of NorMAC Australia
Martine Segalen
Professor Emeritus in Ethnology, Université Paris Ouest France
Genevieve Couraud
President of the Observatoire Droits des Femmes CG-13 President of ECVF, Politicians Against Violence Against Women France
Yvette Roudy
Former Minister for Women’s Rights France
Irene Tabellion
President, La Lune, L’Association Strasbourgeoise de Femmes Homosexuelles France
Marie-Josèphe Bonnet, Ph.D.
Historian of Women, Arts, and the Second World War France
Anne-Yvonne Le Dain
Deputy, Socialist Party
Elfriede Hammerl Journalist and Writer Austria
Nora Tenenbaum
Representative, Coordination of Associations for the Right to Abortion and Contraception
Maya Surduts
Representative Coordination of Associations for the Right to Abortion and Contraception France
Nnenna Chikezie
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development Nigeria
Alice Schwarzer
Editor of EMMA and co-founder of Mouvement de Liberation des Femmes (MLF) Germany
Nathalie Heinich
Sociologist and Research director at Le Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)
Monette Vacquin
Psychoanalyst and author of Frankenstein et les Délires de la Raison and Main Basse sur les Vivants
José Bové
Member of the European Parliament (Green Group), Former Chairman of Confederation Paysanne / Via Campesina, and Founding member of ATTAC France
Emma Sahlén Grip
Press Officer, National Organization for Women’s and Girls Shelters in Sweden, Roks Sweden
Arun Dohle
Executive Director of Against Child Trafficking Germany
Roelie Post
Author of Romania for Export Only: the Untold Story of the Romanian Orphans The Netherlands
Anjali Pawar
Director, Sakhee Pune India
Gita Ramaswamy
Concerned activist for child rights India
Jin Vilsgaard
Contact person for ACT Denmark
Kat Pinder
Sex trade survivor activist and Member, Amnesty International against pimps and buyers
Martine Billard
Deputy of Paris 2002-2012, secretary of the delegation for women’s rights of the National Assembly 2007-2012, author of a proposition of law against violence against women in 2007 with Marie-George Buffet
Gloria Casas Vila
Spanish/Swiss activist against prostitution and surrogacy
Etienne Dujardin
Sophie Heine, Ph.D.
Senior Research Fellow at Egmont, Royal Institute for International Relations Belgium
Josina Kamerling
Head of Regulatory Outreach Belgium
Michel Ghins
Action for family, President Belgium
Xavier Lombard Companies founder Belgium
Bernard Michelet Companies administrator Belgium
Tara Hewitt LGBT Activist United Kingdom

Organizational Signatories:

Swedish National Committee for UN Women, Sweden Swedish Women Doctor’s Society, Sweden
Roks, The National Organization for Women ́s Shelter and Young Women ́s Shelter, Sweden
Swedish Women’s Lobby, Sweden
Kurdistan Women’s Association in Sweden
Women’s Organisation’s Committee on Alcohol and Drug Issues, Sweden European Women’s Lobby, Belgium

LeCorp, France

La Lune, L’Association Strasbourgeoise de Femmes Homosexuelles, France Coordination of Associations for the Right to Abortion and Contraception, France Cercle d’Etude de Réformes Féministes (CERF), France

EMMA, Germany

Against Child Trafficking (ACT), the Netherlands
Sakhee Pune, India

The Center for Bioethics and Culture, USA
FINRRAGE, Australia

Women’s Bioethics Alliance, Australia

Scandinavian Human Rights Lawyers, Norway

Stop Surrogacy Now Statement

The initial photo: [Madrid, 26 April 2017] An international panel of #StopSurrogacyNow campaigners were in Madrid this April, to meet with decision-makers and NGOs, and raise awareness on the need for a global abolition of the practice of surrogacy. Through a public event featuring the screening of the documentary Breeders: A Subclass of Women?, they shared their experience, vision, and recommendations with regards to this new form of commodification of women’s and children’s body. Together with EWL national coordination LEM, they also met with the newly formed Network against surrogacy (Red Estatal Contra El Alquiler de Vientres), gathering 100 organisations from all sectors of society (feminist, LGBT, disability, etc.) and which is campaigning against a surrogacy fair in Madrid through the organisation of a demonstration on 6 May.