Resolution 2011.01 Prohibition of Practices re Human Reproductive Material

February 18, 2014

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Christian Family Life
B.C. & Yukon Provincial Council

Whereas,        The Assisted Human Reproduction Act imposes only selective regulations for the practices of alteration, manipulation and treatment of human reproductive material; and

Whereas,        The Supreme Court of Canada noted that parliament could have prohibited absolutely the practices of alteration, manipulation and treatment of human reproductive material; and

Whereas,        Manipulation and mistreatment of human reproductive material may result in the destruction of human embryos; therefore, be it

Resolved,       That the national council of The Catholic Women’s League of Canada in 91st annual national convention assembled urge the federal government to prohibit absolutely practices of alteration, manipulation and treatment of human reproductive material that result in the destruction of human embryos.


BRIEF:           Prohibition of Practices re Human Reproductive Material

The Assisted Human Reproduction Act (2004) (the Act) imposed some regulations on the practices of alterations, manipulation and treatment of human reproductive material (Act, s. 5), including sections 10 and 11, summarized below:

The Supreme Court of Canada noted that parliament could have “prohibit[ed] absolutely the practices … of altering, manipulation and treatment of human reproductive material” (Reference re SCC 61, para. 101) which refers to “sperm, ovum or other human cell or a human gene, and includes a part of any of them” (Act, s. 3).

Section 10:  No person shall … alter, manipulate or treat any human reproductive material for the purpose of creating an embryo.

Section 11:  No person shall … combine any part or any proportion of the human genome … with any part of the genome of [another] species.

The Supreme Court indicated that it is within criminal law to control the combining of any part of the human genome with any part of the genome of another species (Reference re SCC 61, para. 107). Genome is the DNA of a particular cell (Act, s. 3).

The League urges the federal government to prohibit absolutely the practices of alteration, manipulation and treatment of human reproductive material that would result in the destruction of human embryos and/or the combining of species.

WORKS CITED:

  • Assisted Human Reproduction Act (2004, c. 2)

http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/A-13.4/FullText.html

ACTION PLAN:

Requested Members’ Actions

  1. Write to the federal government to prohibit any practices of altering, manipulation or treatment of genetic material that would result in the death of a human embryo or the combining of species or genetic selection. Send a copy of your letter to your local MP.
  2. Invite a guest speaker on the subject of ethical embryo research.