Campaigner Ranae von Meding achieves parental rights for wife after five-year battle

The CEO of Equality For Children and her wife, Audrey, had been battling for Audrey to be recognised as parent to their two children.

Two smiling women holding two smiling little girls

Activist Ranae von Meding, from Equality For Children, and her wife Audrey, today celebrated after a Dublin court finally recognised Audrey as a parent to the couple’s two daughters.

The pair had long been involved in a legal struggle for equal rights and also to highlight the disparities in Irish law between same-sex parents and opposite-sex parents.

After their first child was born, the family had found themselves in a legal limbo where only one of them was recognised as a parent due to laws around children born via donor assisted human reproduction and surrogacy.

Today’s decision means that Audrey can now be named on her children’s birth certs, and have the ability to make decisions for them, such as medical decisions, that previously would not have been recognised by law.

Ranae von Meding shared, “It’s been 1,904 days since we became parents. The best days of our lives, that goes without saying…but they have also been some of the hardest and all because of what the government had failed to provide in the way of protection for children born via donor assisted human reproduction and surrogacy. 1,904 days of uncertainty, anxiety and needless distress.”

Today, October 20th, we became a legal family. This afternoon my wife became a legal parent to our two children, her biological daughters, but the reality is that she was their mom since the moment we decided to have children together. Ava and Arya know nothing else, just the unconditional love of their two parents. Until this afternoon, the state did not recognise that precious bond between my wife and our girls.

“It’s been a very long road for us and we are exhausted from this fight. So many other families are in the same situation. Depleted from this fight but with no choice but to keep going. We would do anything to protect our children, and so we carry on. Giving up is not an option.”

We should never have had to go through this. We should never have had to fight for such a basic right. Our children should never have been forced to wait for 1,904 days to have the protection and security of both of their parents.

“Please do better Ireland. Please don’t make children wait. Act now.”

Currently in Ireland, while some LGBTQ+ parents are legally recognised, this is definitely not the case across the board. Gay dads who conceive through surrogacy, LGBTQ+ couples who conceive through home insemination or who conceive abroad, and children born abroad to same-sex parents do not have both parents legally recognised.

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