Parents Group Aims For International Surrogacy Standards at Windsor Surrogacy Conference 8-9 March in London
On 8-9 March, Windsor will host the UK & Europe’s first surrogacy conference bringing together intended and current parents to network and hear from 25 experts including surrogates, parents, medical experts, specialist lawyers, researchers, psychologists and surrogacy providers from around the globe.
Parents from the UK, Ireland, Sweden, Australia and Spain will be coming together to share their experiences in what can be an emotionally and financially challenging emotional rollercoaster ride.
The non-profit consumer organisation Families Through Surrogacy hosting the conference will release its “best practice principles” to guide a rapidly growing and poorly regulated international surrogacy industry. These aim to increase agency transparency and accountability, as well as the safety of surrogate mothers themselves.
“This document is based on our own experiences as parents who’ve been through the process,” said FTS director Sam Everingham, whose twin daughters were born via surrogacy in New Delhi in 2011. “It’s not an easy journey; surrogacy can be prohibitively expensive, and those hoping to have children through surrogacy face everything from culture shock to widely varying medical standards. We aim– through our experiences –to empower intended parents to demand certain standards in medical and surrogate care.”
FTS has run highly successful consumer conferences in Australia, but this year will hold its first conference in the UK. FTS conferences place intended parent and surrogates front and centre, supported by legal experts, surrogacy agencies and clinics, some of whom will face tough questions from moderators.
India legalized compensated surrogacy in 2002 and quickly became a world leader in the field. Over 160 Indian clinics are accredited to accept foreigner clients in a sector worth an estimated $400 million dollars a year. But changing Indian policies — including a directive last year barring gay men, singles and de facto couples–and an often hostile bureaucracy push India outside the reach of many.
“We urge clinics worldwide to formally adopt our principles,” said Everingham. “That will go a long way towards providing intending parents with more confidence and making it safer for everyone involved.”
For further information, go to www.growingfamilies.com