HFE Bill again
Yesterday I voted generally against human hybrid embryos on the basis that currently research regulation is not working and I am hence concerned about pushing the boundaries of the law whilst research regulation is inadequate.
I voted both (present abstention) on saviour siblings and to prevent a saviour sibling from being created to give an organ transplant. (the "regenerative" option).
On the issue of children and IVF I am concerned that insufficient priority is given to considering children and their interests. When it comes to lesbian couples and single women the law already requires that they are not discriminated against. I do, however, think that it is better for the child for there to be a knowledge of who a child's father is with the potential for (infrequent) contact than no links to the father other than through a clinic - hence "need for a father". The parental responsibilities would lie with those caring for the child, but there would be a positive option for the child of knowing its father. (hence need for a father and mother rather than father or male role model)
On the issue of abortion I will vote for either the 24 week or 23 weeks 6 days option. The later abortions that occur are generally very difficult situations for the parents and I do not think bringing the criminal law to bear will assist in resolving these situations. I do think more effort needs to go into reducing the numbers of abortions. This mainly has to involve the use of contraception although for young teenagers obviously abstention as a first choice should be the government policy, with contraception as a second best. It is depressing to know that some 14 year olds have had more than one abortion.