Israel: Maternity Leave For Gay Couple

For the first time, the Israeli government has granted maternity leave to a gay male couple.

The National Insurance Institute authorized Israel’s first-ever “maternity” leave for a male couple on Thursday. Yonatan Gher, director of Jerusalem’s nonprofit Open House Pride and Tolerance organization, has received institute approval of a 64-day leave from work on the occasion of the birth of his biological son, born of a surrogate mother in India. His partner of seven years commenced formal adoption procedures, so that the child will be formally recognized as his as well.

The men call the decision significant because Israel does not permit gay couples to use surrogacy.