Fathers ‘no longer needed for IVF’

Telegraph (UK) 09 September 2007
An alliance of churchmen and MPs led by the Bishop of Rochester has united against Government plans to change the law so that IVF can be granted more easily to single parents and lesbians. The Government’s draft Bill on Human Tissues and Embryos says that clinics should no longer take into account “the child’s need for a father” before agreeing to attempts to conceive via artificial means. Bishops and MPs have, however, spoken out against the proposal, which was part of the draft Bill published in May, and is to be included in the Queen’s Speech in November.Writing in The Sunday Telegraph today, the Bishop of Rochester, the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, says: “In the past, the Government has itself declared that it is best for a child to have both a father and a mother. Why is it changing its stance now, at the precise moment when we are seeing all too starkly the consequences of fatherless families?” He adds: “We recognise the courage of single mothers but finding oneself a single parent is very far from setting out policy which deliberately brings children into the world who will never have a father to turn to.”