Question to the Minister for Justice and Equality (Mr. Alan Shatter, TD)
To ask the Minister for Justice and Equality if the inclusion of automatic guardianship rights for both parents is being considered as part of the Family Relationships and Children’s Bill; and if he will make a statement on the matter. – Jerry Buttimer
For WRITTEN on Tuesday, 5th November, 2013.
As I have previously indicated, I am engaged in the preparation of the General Scheme of a Family Relationships and Children Bill and work on the General Scheme is at an advanced stage in my Department. In this context, I am considering the issue of extending guardianship rights to more fathers as well as seeking to ensure that children’s welfare and best interests are fully safeguarded.
I also intend, subject to the necessary consultations, to clarify the law on parentage in cases of surrogacy. These are very complex areas of law in which the constitutional rights of all of the parties must be carefully balanced. I expect to bring my detailed proposals for the General Scheme to Government in the near future.