July 5, 2022

Donor anonymity disappears in British Columbia

IVF sperm and egg donors can no longer be anonymous in the Canadian province of British Colombia, a judge has ruled. It was a victory for Olivia Pratten, a 29-year-old journalist.

Olivia PrattenIVF sperm and egg donors can no longer be
anonymous in the Canadian province of British Colombia, a judge has ruled. It
was a victory for Olivia Pratten,
a 29-year-old journalist, who has been campaigning for years to have access to
the records of the clinic where she was conceived. She contended that it was
discriminatory that adopted children could access birth records but not IVF children.

Madam Justice Elaine
Adair agreed. “Anonymity is not in the child’s best interests,” she wrote in
her judgement.
Donor offspring and adopted children should be entitled to the
same information. She described IVF children as a “vulnerable group” whose
physical and psychological health is “too important to leave unregulated.”

“I’m really happy,”
said Ms Pratten. “It’s the end of donor anonymity in B.C. It’s the first time
this has happened in North America. It’s a landmark decision and it’s about
time.”

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, the B.C. representative for
children and youth, observed that the case could have implications for the rest
of Canada. “This is a significant decision that suggests the rights of the
child and the right to have health information and other things that are
important to their well-being as they grow and become adults trumps the privacy
interest of the system behind the anonymous sperm-donor program,” she said. ~ Globe and Mail, May 20

Michael Cook
Canada
Olivia Pratten
sperm donation