MHB's Brussels conference attracts unprecedented media attention, sparking debate about surrogacy and gay parenting

Our “Parenting Options for European Gay Men” conference held in Brussels May 2-3 attracted more than 200 prospective gay dads from 10 countries, and intense media attention. This came amid increasing political debates across Belgium, France, and the Netherlands regarding surrogacy and assisted reproduction legislation. While criticism came from both the right and left sides of the political spectrum, we had our say through numerous interviews with our board members, the surrogates who came with us form the USA, European parents and conference attendees.

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The weekend started with a well attended symposium on the “Legal and societal challenges for gay fatherhood across Europe, and the road ahead”, followed by a welcome reception and International Family Equality Day celebration. A clown helped entertain the children who came with dads from Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and France, and we concluded with a screening of the film "Talking with Surrogates" (Paroles de femmes porteuses) by Delphine Lance.

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The Sunday conference included peer advice on planning either surrogacy or adoption parenting projects, picking providers, expert and personal stories panels, information about our financial assistance program (GPAP), and the opportunity to meet more than twenty clinics, agencies and community organizations at the packed resource fair. The large attendance was accommodated by adding an overflow room where an additional 50 attendees watched the presentations via live video feed. All the while we also dealt with the dozens of journalists, TV and radio crews who were hunting for some good quotes… Here are some examples of the media coverage and links to articles in both French and Dutch.

[right-mouse click on the images to download high-resolution files]

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