“If You Are Parent in One Country, You Are Parent in Every Country”: But still today a child can be stateless in the EU just because it has two mothers

A baby born to two mothers, one from Gibraltar and one from Bulgaria, has become a test case at the European Court of Justice for the freedom of movement of rainbow families in the EU. Read on and find out how to join our campaign for parents without borders!

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The story of Baby Sara’s family

Kalina* and Jane* got married in 2018 in Gibraltar, Jane’s birthplace. Kalina is from Bulgaria, a member state of the EU. Because it is part of the United Kingdom, since January 1 of this year, Gibraltar has exited the EU.

Meet Sara’s mothers, their attorney and Deystvie.

Why the court should judge in Baby Sara’s favour

“All EU citizens and their families have the right to enjoy freedom of movement,” says Arpi Avetisyan, Head of litigations at ILGA-Europe. “Article 21 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union states that all EU citizens and their family members have the right to move and reside freely within the EU. Through this case, the CJEU has the opportunity to clarify that parentage established in one member state must be recognised across the EU.

Attorney Denitsa Lyubenova from Bulgaria talks about the case in ILGA-Europe’s podcast, The Frontline.

Severe obstacles for children

Unfortunately, Sara’s situation is not an isolated case. According to Arpi, it is representative of what many rainbow families experience across the EU. “Parents cease to exist when moving from one EU country to another, where birth certificates from another member state are not recognised. These situations create severe obstacles for children in exercising the rights to which they are entitled under European and international law. Among others, the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) is violated, restricting access to education, healthcare, and social security.”



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