Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Queensland to protect donor-conceived peoples’ right to access genetic history

Queensland Attorney-General, Shannon Fentiman has tabled the final response to the Legal Affairs and Safety Committee’s report in Parliament, which supports in principle all six recommendations made in the Committee’s Inquiry into matters relating to donor conception information report.

“Conception using donated sperm, eggs or embryos has given countless Queensland couples and individuals the precious gift of starting or extending a family,” said Ms Fentiman.

“We must not lose sight of the unique needs of those who have been conceived through this process.

“Allowing donor-conceived people to access their genetic origins will enhance their well-being and allow them to manage their health appropriately,” she said.

In conducting its inquiry, the Committee received 71 submissions from stakeholders, including donor-conceived people, donors, and industry stakeholders.

The Committee recommended the Government establish a central register of donor conception information, and that all donor-conceived people should have the right to know the identity of their donor once they have reached the age of 18, regardless of when they were born.

Donor Conceived Australia (DCA) National Director, Aimee Shackleton said the donor-conceived community has advocated for the changes for over three decades.

“And we welcome these recommendations being progressed as a positive first step,” she said.

“Queensland donor-conceived people have the same rights to their medical and family history as any other Australian, including the option for facilitated contact with donors and siblings, with the consent of both parties.

“DCA is encouraged that the Queensland Government supports protecting these rights for donor-conceived people, similar to those in other Australian States and Territories.”

The Committee also recommended that support and counselling services are provided for people accessing the register.

The Queensland Government response to the report is available here: https://documents.parliament.qld.gov.au/tp/2023/5723T231-FF1F.pdf

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