26 August 2011
The UK Donor Link (UKDL) is the voluntary contact register for donor conceived adults in the UK who were conceived prior to August 1991. It is threatened with closure and shuts its doors to new registrants today because the Government will stop its funding in October 2011 pending a decision next month by the public health minister.
UKDL enables donor conceived people, their donors and half-siblings to exchange information and where agreed contact each other. The register is available throughout the UK and helps individuals who were conceived with donor gametes and donors who donated before the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act came into force in 1991.
UKDL has so far been unsuccessful in securing alternative funding and is running a campaign seeking donations. UKDL closes its doors today to new registrants because DNA testing and linking cannot be completed before the service may have to close at the end of October.
Louisa Ghevaert, a specialist in fertility and parenting law at Porter Dodson states “UKDL provides a very important service for donor conceived individuals and donors, who might not otherwise be able to access information about their genetic origins or make contact with genetic relatives (as donors were usually anonymous and there was no legal requirement to maintain records before August 1991). If UKDL closes altogether it could have devastating consequences for donor conceived people and donors in the UK. It would be a serious retrograde step and an immeasurable loss to the fertility sector.”
Need an expert fertility lawyer or donor conception? If you would like to discuss your family building needs or you would like specialist fertility and family law advice contact Louisa Ghevaert by email email@example.com or by telephone +44 (0)20 7965 8399.