Donor Site for Lesbians Draws Fierce Criticism

Online Service Triggers Outrage and Legal Fears

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LONDON, JUNE 25, 2002 ( The public agency that regulates fertility clinics expressed concern about the start of Britain´s first online sperm donor service for lesbians, the Telegraph reported.

A new Web site offers to match donors with lesbian couples wishing to have children, skirting the difficulties of using an identified donor or dealing with fertility clinics, the London daily said.

«I have believed for a long time that same-sex couples have a fundamental right to have children,» said John Gonzalez, founder of the Man Not Included site.

The move was welcomed by Outrage, a homosexual-rights group, but pro-family organizations described it as «revolting.»

«Honestly, these are designer babies for alternative lifestyles,» said Lynette Burrows, a member of the Family Education Trust. «It´s a wicked and selfish idea.»

She added: «They know they are subjecting the child to a lifetime of psychological difficulties, starting with having two mothers, which they know is not possible, and no father, and what their peers are going to say about that abnormal situation.»

«Sperm donations» are condemned by the Catholic Church as being contrary to the dignity of marriage and the rights of children.

Gonzalez said the company allowed women to state their preferred race, eye color, height and weight of donors over the Internet, but the donor and the recipient couples would never meet. Men would donate their sperm anonymously at clinics. After being screened for diseases, it would be sent to lesbian couples for «home insemination.»

The Web site does not store sperm, so it falls outside the jurisdiction of the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority.

An agency spokesman told the Telegraph: «The HFEA is concerned about the possibility of genetic or infectious diseases being transmitted through gamete donation.»

He added: «Donors and recipients should also be aware that where unlicensed insemination takes place, there is no legal guarantee that donors may not be regarded as the legal parents of any children that may be born as a result.»

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