I got my 4 months maternity leave as a normal birthing mother would from work. However…the Department of Labour has been a royal pain in my derriere since then.

I went on maternity leave in October 2016 and nobody bothered to notify me (or answer phones at the UIF offices) that they don’t know what to do with my application – and that everyone was too scared to take it on. So I marched myself down there and did my normal “Really, this discrimination ain’t gonna fly with me” bit. I drove off and parked my little car at home while trying not to burst into a ball of flames.

I got to my laptop and that’s when I decided – I will fight for parents through surrogacy to get the same treatment as other moms – and have our own damn forms. If I have to pay my surrogate out of my own pocket so she can go on maternity leave, I also deserve paid maternity leave from UIF. The Children’s Act and Basic Human Rights laws say I also have right…but it just gets trampled on by our dear government.

The Department of Labour after my appeal (lodged in April 2017) are still asking for an adoption certificate – for the third time – and they send that request through on 2/8/2017 because I was pestering them and they got tired me! They cannot understand that there is a law that says I don’t need to adopt…

No adoption procedures are required in respect of the child/children to be born of the surrogate motherhood agreement in terms of Section 297(1)(a) of the Children’s Act, together with the provisions of paragraphs 2 and 3;

Out of desperation I have now lodged a complaint through the presidential hotline – there is something seriously wrong with the Department of Labour’s acts. it is still grounded in pre-2010 laws. I am so $#%#%#$% tired of bureaucrats. If laws have to change to not trample on my and Lexa’s rights – then I will fight for it.

In the meantime, read these articles:

The following article from the Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyer is really interesting!

It takes a village to raise a child, but who might get the leave? – Traditional family units across the world have changed. The proposed changes to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act, No 75 of 1997 (BCEA) recognise those changes and the important roles that different people play in raising children in a modern family unit.

“Finally, s25C proposes “Commissioning Parental Leave”. Again, this is a completely unchartered area of leave for the BCEA to cover. A parent who is a commissioning parent in a surrogate motherhood agreement would also be entitled to ten weeks’ Commissioning Parental Leave or Parental Leave. If two persons are the commissioning parents in the surrogate motherhood agreement, then the commissioning parents must elect which parent will take Parental Leave and which will get Commissioning Parental Leave.”

If you are in the same boat… keep on raging.

Then just to end the post off on a low note…


Susann is a travel, parenting, beauty and lifestyle blogger in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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