A gay couple have been formally recognised as parents by the French state, setting a precedent that could eventually apply to an estimated 200,000 children living in homosexual families in France.
Carla and Marie-Laure, and their daughters Giulietta, 10, Luana, seven, and Zelina, five, have been declared one family by the French courts – the first family with parents of the same sex to be officially endorsed.
The ruling could have far-reaching consequences for the survival of legal barriers against homosexual marriage, adoption and artificial insemination. Marie-Laure, 45, and Carla, 46, who live with their children in Paris, have fought a long campaign to be recognised as one family, backed by teachers, paediatricians, neighbours and relatives. By a series of legal manoeuvres, they have succeeded in zig-zagging through French laws which refuse to recognise gay families.
Marie-Laure is the natural mother of the three children. One was born after artificial insemination in France. When France outlawed artificial insemination to lesbians she, like hundreds of other women, travelled to a clinic in Belgium.0