Lesbian couple set up first UK same-sex fertility clinic

A lesbian couple are set to open Britain’s first same-sex fertility clinic today.

Natalie Drew and Ashling Phillips, who themselves have two children by a sperm donor, started the fertility centre online in 2007, but following a surge in demand, they have decided to set up an office.

But critics have slammed the move as catering to adults’ desires rather than children’s interests.

Criticised

The service charges users £9.99 per month, with extra costs for tests and consultations.

But Mike Judge of The Christian Institute warned: “Kids need a mum and a dad, a male and a female role model. This is denying that.

“This clinic is more to do with the desires of adults rather than the best interests of children”, he added.

Discrimination

The service has faced charges of discrimination from various sources, even from similar centres run by homosexual groups, as it will be “exclusively gay”.

A Home Office spokesman said: “The law is very clear: someone who is providing a service cannot refuse to serve somebody on the basis of their sexual orientation, but in this case they can market themselves as a same-sex fertility clinic.

“However”, the spokesman added, “if a straight couple were to approach them for help, they would not be able to refuse to serve them”.

When questioned on this, the couple said, while they would not turn away a heterosexual couple, the clinic’s priority is people in same-sex relationships.

Legal battles

Children have been caught up in tug-of-war cases between lesbian couples and male sperm donors. Two such cases hit the news in December last year.

In the first case, a lesbian mother lost a bitter custody battle with the homosexual man who fathered her two children through artificial insemination, when a judge ruled that the children should live with their father for 152 days of the year.

The other case involved a lesbian couple who said they would contest a bid by the baby’s father, who had responded to their advert for a donor on a homosexual website, to get access and full parental responsibility for his daughter.

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