Canada: OK to Ban Gay Sperm Donors, Court Rules
January 30, 2007
The Ontario Court of Appeal on Jan. 12 upheld a ban on gay men donating sperm to sperm banks. The court rejected the claim of a Toronto lesbian, known as Susan Doe, who argued against the 1977 ban.
The federal Processing of Semen for Assisted Conception Regulations prohibit the use of semen from all men who have had sex with men (MSM) in order to lower the risk of infectious diseases such as HIV being transmitted to women and unborn children. Men over age 40 are also prohibited from donating to sperm banks due to an increased risk of genetic mutations.
The ban is "rational and health-based," ruled the three-judge panel. "The medical evidence in the record establishes that there is a higher prevalence of HIV and hepatitis among men in the MSM category," the decision read.
Doe argued the ban violates the constitutional equality guarantees of gays and lesbians. She also claimed it violates her right to life, liberty and security by restricting her ability to determine who will father her child via assisted conception.
1.29.2007; CanWest News Service