On March 26, the Paris City Council unanimously adopted Danielle Simonnet’s plan, (elected official from political party “France Insoumise”), to delete the titles of “mother” and “father” on the application forms for birth certificates. These titles will now be replaced by “parent 1” and “parent 2”.

Attempting to abolish what she qualifies as discrimination against same-sex couples, Danielle Simonnet argues: “It is unfair that same-sex couples should not be able to carry out administrative procedures as other couples do“, adding that “this is a breach of equality”. The City of Paris wants to implement this change “as soon as possible“, according to Bruno Julliard, the first deputy to the mayor (socialist party) Anne Hidalgo.

The application forms for birth records for Paris via Internet have not been modified to take into account same-sex couples who are parents. For example, on the birth certificate application form, the existing labels only indicate: “father’s name” and “mother’s name”.

Some towns have already modified the forms to mention “parent 1” and “parent 2” on some school documents. Since 2010, the SNCF (National Train Company) applications for discount cards for large families have been labeled “parent 1” and “parent 2”.

This action by an elected official in Paris illustrates how the law allowing same-sex marriage has sowed the seeds for a number of long lasting organizational changes in French couples’ daily lives. This contradicts the slogan constantly repeated at the time “this law does not change anything for other couples” (more than 99% of all couples).  For example since 2013 the family record book has deleted the titles of “husband or father” and “wife or mother”; the rules for attributing the family name to a newborn have become more complex; Opportunities to adopt a child from abroad have been reduced due to more restrictive policies implemented by some countries for lack of assurance that the children will be entrusted to couples composed of a mother and a father. The basic principle of filiation (every child is born to a man and a woman) is being contested by the possibility of same-sex couples adopting children, etc…

This determination to eliminate the titles of mother and father from administrative documents has negative consequences for tens of millions of people and the vast majority of couples.