Nuclear Norms or Fluid Families: Incorporating Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children into Canadian Family Law

Canadian Journal of Family Law, Vol. 21, pp. 133-178, 2004

Posted: 7 May 2011

Date Written: 2004

Abstract

As the number of children born into lesbian and gay families increases, custody and access disputes between same-sex parents, and between lesbian mothers and gay sperm donors, have begun to emerge. These cases raise fundamental questions about the meaning of family, the definition of legal parentage, and the regulation of the gay and lesbian communities. Amongst academics, and even within the lesbian and gay communities themselves, there are diverging views on how these cases should be dealt with. For example, should law reform in this area be geared towards protecting the 'homo-nuclear' family unit or will recognizing multiple parents and a wide range of family forms more adequately meet the diverse needs of same-sex families? Closely related to this question is the issue of whether any law reform efforts, particularly those dealing with the status and rights of known sperm donors, can be removed from the highly gendered atmosphere which currently pervades Canadian family law.

Keywords: domestic relations, gay and lesbian parents, children of gay parents, parenthood, Parent and child;family law, custody and access law

Suggested Citation

Kelly, Fiona, Nuclear Norms or Fluid Families: Incorporating Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children into Canadian Family Law (2004). Canadian Journal of Family Law, Vol. 21, pp. 133-178, 2004, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1683654

Fiona Kelly (Contact Author)

La Trobe Law School ( email )

La Trobe University
Bundoora, VIC 3083 3142
Australia

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