California Bill SB 729 seeks to redefine "infertility" to be a status, as opposed to a medical condition. Changing the definition to "a person’s inability to reproduce either as an individual or with their partner without medical intervention" would classify gay men as infertile.
The bill, which passed the Senate last month, would require insurance companies to cover in-vitro fertilization procedures. With the change in definition, this would also include forcing the firms to cover surrogacy for gay males.
Co-author of the bill Sen. Caroline Menjivar (D) said the bill "will ensure that queer couples no longer have to pay more out of pocket to start families than non-queer families." She continued, "This bill is critical to achieving full-lived equality for LGBTQ+ people, as well as advancing well-rounded and comprehensive health care for all Californians."
An organization called Men Having Babies boasted that the bill will "remove financial barriers" for gay men who wish to rent a woman's womb to have a child who has the DNA of one of the males in the relationship.
The group states on its website, "Central to our fight for more equitable access to parenting options is what we know from our combined experiences: The anguish and yearning that same-sex couples and singles feel due to their inability to reproduce without medical intervention is equal to the anguish of heterosexual couples who suffer from 'medical infertility.'"
According to the Free Beacon, the opposition to SB 729 comes from California business and insurance groups who claim that it will raise insurance premiums by more than $330 million a year. Others point to the erosion of the traditional family structure.
"Under this bill, most insurance plans would be required to provide in vitro fertilization services based on someone’s relationship status or sexual orientation," said Emma Waters with the Heritage Foundation. "For single men or male same-sex couples, this means they would need to access a surrogate to carry their child. So the bill is outlining what adults have the right to, but nowhere does it address the needs of the child or safety concerns regarding the child either in IVF or in gestational surrogacy."
"This bill seeks to further erode the father, mother, and child nuclear family and make everyone in society pay for it to further a make-believe cause named 'fertility equality,'" said Greg Burt, director of the California Family Council. "The reason healthy singles and same-sex couples can't reproduce has nothing to do with infertility; it has to do with biology."
SB 729 would not affect any "entity that enters into a contract with the State Department of Health Care Services for the delivery of health care services pursuant to specified provisions."
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