Assisted Human Reproduction Canada was a regulatory agency created in 2006 with a $10 million a year budget. Its purpose was to promote healthy, safe, and ethical assisted reproduction practices.
However, the agency was poorly planned and the legal environment left it unable to enforce any laws. For example, as a federal regulatory board, it was unconstitutional to design laws that overstepped provincial boundaries.
As a result of these problems, the agency was finally removed from the federal budget last week.
Though the agency has been disbanded, some of its laws still exist.
For example, it is still illegal to pay donors for sperm or egg donation, though they can be reimbursed for their expenses. The definition of “expenses” however was never defined. As a result, most sperm donations are imported from the United States, where regulation is unknown.
Though the agency had good intentions, it fell short of implementing and enforcing regulations that would help Canadians. As a result, the country is left with the after-effects that will need to be sorted out in time.