Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Opening IVF to surrogates and sperm donors, ‘egoistic’ says Women’s Council

National Women’s Council says opening embryo freezing to surrogates or sperm donors akin to ‘purchasing commodity’
The National Council of Women has struck out against the introduction of embryo freezing to Malta’s law on in vitro fertilization, which only allows the freezing of female ova.

The law was introduced by the Nationalist government in late 2012, but the new Labour government is considering legalizing embryo freezing legal to improve the efficiency of IVF.

“Bringing a child into the world is not a right, either to a male or female who wish to become a parent, because in so doing they might be ignoring the rights of the third person in this equation, the child,” NCW president Mary Gaerty said.

“One understands the pain of those who wish to become parents and are unable to achieve this aspiration, but must someone’s desires be constructed on egoism without a thought for the basic needs of the unborn child who will start life already missing out on the most essential formation for the personal development in life as a human being?”

The NCW wants to retain oocyte freezing, as opposed to embryo freezing, the embryo, claiming this will protect embryos from discarded or aborted, or left frozen “in limbo where this new life cannot decide for himself/herself the right to be born, since someone else decided their fate for them.”

Malta’s Embryo Protection Act forbids sperm donation or surrogacy, and is only available to opposite-sex couples in stable relationships.

Gaerty however claimed that allowing gays and single parents to access IVF through surrogacy and sperm donation would be akin to “purchasing a commodity”, and asked whether IVF children could legally know who their sperm donor fathers or surrogate mothers were.

“When a woman is pregnant, she is encouraged to bond with the child in her womb, talk, caress, sing and for the baby to grow in the love of the mother. But what bonding will this child receive if the mother has no interest in the child, except the financial aspect? This child will be abandoned at birth by the person who brought her/him in this world,” Gaerty said of surrogates who give birth to children in adoption to parents unable to have a child.

“And what about the father of the child, what measures will he take to make it possible for him to bond? The baby on the other hand is growing in the absence of this sensitive human contact, growing in a body that is just serving as an incubator for nine months,” Gaerty said of male gamete donors.