Sydney Morning Herald May 18, 2008
A CONTROVERSIAL new bill that will remove the word “father” from birth certificates to recognise lesbian couples who have children through IVF will be put before NSW Parliament. Fifty laws across NSW covering the Local Government Act, Industrial Relations Act and the constitution will be amended to include new parental presumption protection for female same-sex couples. The bill equates the position of a lesbian partner of a woman who has a child after becoming pregnant by a fertilisation procedure, other than sexual intercourse, with the position of a married woman’s husband. Lesbian parents will see expressions such as “birth mother” replace “mother” and “both parents” to replace “the father and the mother” on birth certificates.
Lesbian parents will also be given protection for their children under workers’ compensation, inheritance law and parent-teacher nights at school. Schools will also be forced to recognise both partners in a lesbian couple as “parents”. The conservative Australian Family Association is campaigning against the change. Gay & Lesbian Rights Lobby spokeswoman Emily Gray said the changes would give children added emotional and financial stability.