Bioethics Blogs

Victory: Eggs-for-Research Bill Dies in California Legislature

The Center for Genetics and Society and allies are celebrating the demise of AB 2531, a bill that would have allowed payments to women who provide eggs for research, effectively expanding the commercial market for human eggs from the fertility sector to the research context.

The bill, which was sponsored by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, died in the State Legislature last week, never making it to the Governor’s desk. Assemblymember Autumn Burke anticipated a veto from Governor Brown and decided not to bring it up for a vote in the Assembly when it was sent back for concurrence, after passing the Senate on August 29 with amendments that seemed to be a tepid response to opponents’ objections.

CGS and allied women’s health, reproductive justice and public interest organizations opposed the bill because of dramatically insufficient information about the health effects of egg provision; the impossibility of true informed consent given the lack of data; the likelihood that low-income women, women of color, and immigrant women would most likely be affected; and the bill’s conflict with national recommendations for federal policy and with state law. For a full explanation of these concerns, see the opposition floor alert and CGS’ letter to the Senate Health Committee.

Organizations opposing AB 2531 included the Alliance for Humane Biotechnology, Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, Breast Cancer Action, Center for Genetics and Society, Friends of the Earth, Forward Together, National Women’s Health Network, Our Bodies Ourselves, Pro-Choice Alliance for Responsible Research, and We Are Egg Donors.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.