At the start of Pride Month, same-sex parents in Connecticut are breathing a sigh of relief as the state officially signs a new parenting bill into law. Read on for the full story.
Connecticut Signs New Parenting Bill Recognizing Same-Sex Parents
The new legislation offers legal certainty to LGBTQ parents and children by updating outdated definitions & provisions related to fertility. It also recognizes the changing medical, legal, and cultural realities around conception and fertility.
The bill clarifies the rights of ALL non-biological parents- be they straight or gay- when surrogates or other assisted reproductive methods are used. It also clarifies the rights of the surrogate.
Governor Gov. Ned Lamont (D) signed the bill into law during a ceremony on the Capitol’s south lawn, marking a bright spot in a year that’s been incredibly unkind to the LGBTQ community. In a live Facebook stream, Lamont said,
“This is such an important day — what it says for our kids, what it says for Connecticut, what it says for respecting everybody and who they are.”
Rep. Jeff Currey, a Democrat of East Hartford and one of three openly gay members Connecticut legislature, added,
“It is a true privilege to have so many allies in the General Assembly and in the building behind us today“And it makes our caucus of three small but ever so mighty.”
Non-Biological Parents’ Rights Expanded
Under the previous law, non-biological parents had to go through a process called second-parent adoption just to have the same basic rights to their child as the biological parent. The process was long, expensive and emotionally taxing, making it incredibly challenging for many couples to complete.
Douglas NeJaime, principal drafter of the bill and Yale Law School professor, told NBC News,
“The really great thing this bill does for those families is that it allows them to establish parentage through a simple administrative form.”
Once signed and submitted, the form “has the effect of having a judgment from a court, and all other states have to treat it as valid,” NeJaime added.
NeJaime explained that the gender-neutral verbiage in the new law protects same-sex couples and transgender parents, giving them equal legal status regardless of their genetic connection to their children.
The bill passed unanimously in the Senate and by a vote of 141-1 in the House. Republican Rep. Mark Anderson of Granby was the only one to vote against it. With its passing, Connecticut is no longer the only New England state without a parentage act, according to Stamford Advocate.
Currently, only 14 states have similar laws protecting non-biological parents.
What do you think about Connecticut’s new law protecting same-sex parents? Share your thoughts below.