Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz announced on Tuesday that starting next week, everyone in Israel, including single men, gay couples and transgender people, will be able to have children through a surrogate in Israel. This decision was announced in a new circular issued by the Health Ministry.
“This is an exciting day for me, as a gay minister who has known well the exclusion and discrimination against us for years. It is also my personal struggle,” Horowitz said.
The decision came after the High Court's decision in July to strike down laws that limit surrogacy access to couples made up of a man and a woman, or single woman who had trouble getting pregnant.
“From now on, we will treat each parent and each family equally,” Horowitz declared. “Everyone has the right to parenthood. Straight people and single couples and gay couples. We have expanded the interpretation [of the ruling], and transgender people will also be able to access the surrogacy process in Israel.”
“Moments like these are exactly what gives me, and all of us, the strength to keep going,” Horowitz said. “The circular upholds the High Court ruling, establishing simply what was supposed to be completely self-evident – equality. That's all, just equality.”
Horowitz addressed the women who choose to be surrogate mothers, saying: “We are committed to these women, and we will continue to do whatever it takes to protect you and protect your rights.”
“LGBTQ+ people have an equal right to be parents. We have become one of the most advanced countries in the world in the field,” he said. “Full equality – this is the struggle of my community, this is the principle we sanctify, and now we take a huge step towards this goal.”
“There is still a lot of work ahead of us in the struggle for full equality, but such moments are exactly what gives me, and all of us, the strength to continue,” Horowitz added. “Today, we can be proud of Israel.”
This article was translated from Hebrew by Lily Sieradzki.