This Week in Bioethics

by Christopher White, CBC Director of Research and Education on December 18, 2015

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1. European Parliament Condemns Surrogacy

This week the European Parliament condemned surrogacy—delivering a huge victory for women and children. In their statement, the EP concluded that surrogacy “undermines the human dignity of the woman since her body and its reproductive functions are used as a commodity.” We hope that policy makers around the world will recognize this as well and act to ban the practice in their respective countries.

2. Mexican State Bans Surrogacy for Gay Couples and Foreigners

The state of Tabasco in Mexico has banned surrogacy for gay couples and foreigners in an attempt to reign in an unregulated and rapidly expanded market. As of now, the practice is now limited to Mexican couples who want to pursue it at home. This is a step in a right direction, but as we continue to advocate at the CBC, the only principled long term solution is a full and total ban on the practice.

3. Federal Government Opposes Paying for Embryo Research

In the current debates over the Federal budget it’s encouraging to note that there is a ban on embryo research—including the gene editing technique known as CRISPR, which is all the rage in the medical research world right now. According to the current bill, funds are banned for research “in which a human embryo is intentionally created or modified to include a heritable genetic modification.” At long last, some good news out of Washington!

4.Nurses May Be Allowed to Practice Euthanasia in Canada

As physician assisted suicide is set to become national law in Canada, a recommendation from the committee in charge of implementing the law has advised that nurses be allowed to join in the practice. According to the recommendation, “provinces and territories should in turn ensure that no regulatory barriers exist that would prevent these health care professionals from providing physician-assisted dying.” It seems that Canada, in its attempts to corrupt the healthcare profession, is intent on being an equal opportunity offender!

5. Indian Women Speak Out Against Surrogacy

A growing movement to protect women in India has spoken out against the practice of surrogacy. According to a recent statement from the President of the Istari Jagriti Manch state, “under the surrogacy industry, the poor women of India are being exploited. They join this industry finding no other way feed their families and funding the education of their children.” In recent months, India—once an open market for surrogacy—has cracked down on the practice and become an example for the rest of the developing world, and the developed world, too.

This Week in Bioethics Archive

Image by dumbledad via flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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