Wednesday, August 11, 2010

VIEW FROM THE OTHER SIDE

Hey there all

Last week I posted a question to you all from a lady who was concerned about the treatment kids with gay parents get in school. There were a lot of mixed emotions concerning this topic. A few of you felt that we as gay couples have the right to have kids, that it formed part of our rights in society and that the problem lay more with the education children received from their parents with regards to people/families who were 'different' to them. Others felt that it was not fair to the children to be put through even more pressure at school than what they already face on a daily basis.I thank you for all your input.

Today, I am posting a letter I received from a gay couple who recently became fathers. This time we get to see things from the parents point of view. I think you might find this interresting:

"Since the birth of our twins, 13 June 2010, we have battled with Home Affairs to get our twin boys registered with both our surnames.

Due to the recent change on the Children's Act, we did not have to undergo the procedure of adoption. As I am the biological and natural father to the children and we are married, we only had to submit our application to the High Court to declare us as the legal parents. Which we have done and the High Court signed a Court Order on 22 June 2010, declaring us the legal parents.
According to Home Affairs staff, we as a same-sex couple can not register our children with both our surnames due to the fact that a man can not give birth to a child. Home Affairs insists that the birth mother's name should be listed on the birth certificates. However the High Court has signed a Court Order declaring my husband and I as the legal parents to the children. We have completed all the necessary applications for re-registration on 29 June 2010, documents were only handed to Home Affairs head office (by hand) on 02 July 2010. Home Affairs has been sitting with our applications and all other related documents for over a month now, only when I called the offices did they started making work of our case. We have been lied to by staff of Home Affairs, whereby they told us that our applications were with their legal department and that they were awaiting an instruction from their legal department. Subsequently I have found out (from the legal department, Litigation Officer) that our case was only brought to their attention on 05 August 2010.

It has been well over a month now that we have been waiting for the Abridge Birth Certificates. I have written emails and have spoken to several people, and still I am being told that they are looking into the matter. Today our case has been brought to the attention of the Office to the Director-General, thanks to the Democratic Alliance for their assistance. However, this being said I must still wait until Thursday to see if the next person could do anything about the registrations. When gay-marriages were legalized, Home Affairs had done all the necessary changes on all documents pertaining to registration of the marriage. However they have not made any attempt to make the necessary changes on the Registration documents for the registration of a child/ren born to same-sex couples through surrogacy.

When a heterosexual couple register a child that was born to them through surrogacy, there seems to be no questions asked as there is a male and female listed as father and mother of the child. But when two men or two women want to register a child/ren born to them through surrogacy, a thousand questions are asked and rude remarks are passed. In my view and opinion it is nothing but discrimination against gay people and I find it a violation of my human rights. The fact of the matter remains that in 2001 a similar case was brought to the constitutional court and the High Court then made a ruling that section 5 of the Childrens Act of 1987 was unconstitutional.

In nine years Home Affairs have done nothing to change any documentation pertaining to the registration of children born through surrogacy to same-sex couples."

1 comment:

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