Italy Wants to Make Surrogacy a Universal Crime

Why banning surrogacy isn’t the solution.

Giulia Penni

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Photo by Gayatri Malhotra on Unsplash

A petition to make surrogacy a “universal crime” was sent to the Italian Supreme Court by CitizenGO, an ultra-conservative advocacy group, a few weeks ago. In Italy surrogacy is already illegal, but nothing prevents Italian citizens from going to clinics abroad. Now this could change.

Giorgia Meloni, leader of the right-wing party “Brothers of Italy”, who’s spearheading the campaign along with CitizenGO, called surrogacy a “third millennium form of slavery, which humiliates women’s bodies and turns children into a commodity.”

ART Technology

Surrogacy is one of many assisted reproductive technologies (ART), which are medical procedures used to address infertility.

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is probably the most common technique available to help people have a baby. Simply put, during IVF an egg is removed from a woman’s ovaries and fertilized with sperm in a lab. The fertilized egg is then returned to the woman’s womb to grow and develop. IVF can be carried out using the woman’s egg and her partner’s sperm, or eggs and sperm from donors.

Two other ART procedures that are becoming increasingly popular are gestational carrier (GC) and surrogate. Although they’re often used interchangeably, there is a big difference between the two.

A gestational carrier is a woman who carries an embryo created through the process of IVF using the intended mother’s or a donor’s egg and the sperm of the intended father or a donor’s sperm to get pregnant. The resulting child has no genetic link to the gestational carrier. A surrogate is a woman who uses her egg and the sperm of the intended father or a donor’s sperm to become pregnant. The resulting child is, from a biological point of view, hers.

The Trouble with Renting a Womb

Even though surrogacy is used by more and more couples who can’t conceive in the traditional way, this method is widely considered controversial, and it’s illegal in several countries. Sweden, for example, banned all surrogacy (commercial and altruistic, where the surrogate does not receive monetary compensation).

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Giulia Penni

Copywriter @ Persado. Logophile. Lifelong learner. I don’t write to impress. I write to inform, entertain, inspire. Thanks for your time!