Earlier today I called upon professional organizations and their members to unequivocally condemn the activities of the defendants in the baby selling scandal. Moments ago, the American Academy of Assisted Reproductive Technology Attorneys issued a statement which I have copied below.
While I appreciate the public position of AAARTA and recognize they are the first organization to take a public stand, my only “regret” is that they did not come out more forcefully in condemning what transpired. It is imperative that every organization attached to the infertility community emphatically denounces what occurred, provides substantive assurances that this was an aberrational incident and offers concrete suggestions on how to avoid falling prey to unethical operators. Unless and until we get in front of this story and demonstrate that the industry will not condone these illicit activities, the fallout from this scandal could to irreparable harm to individuals suffering from infertility for years to come. So while maybe I am being unfairly harsh on AAARTA, I do appreciate them taking this public position:
Baby-selling case is regrettable
As president of the American Academy of Adoption Attorneys (AAAA) and director of the American Academy of Assisted Reproductive Technology Attorneys (AAARTA), it is important to us that we comment on the case of Theresa Erickson, the San Diego-area attorney who pleaded guilty to being part of what the U.S. Attorney’s Office describes as a baby-selling ring (Aug. 10). We are greatly saddened to hear of this most regrettable situation. It illustrates how important it is for prospective parents, whether through adoption or assisted reproduction, to work with reputable and ethical professionals.
AAAA and AAARTA are both credentialed, nonprofit organizations of attorneys, judges and law professors throughout the U.S. and Canada who are bound by a strict code of ethics and have distinguished themselves in the fields of adoption and assisted reproduction. Our missions are to maintain the highest ethical standards in the representation of families in the areas of adoption and assisted reproduction. Our goal is for every person seeking to build a family through adoption or assisted reproduction to receive competent, ethical and effective representation for a reasonable fee, and to eliminate the practices described in this article. — Mark M. Demaray, president, American Academy of Adoption Attorneys, and Judith Sperling-Newton, director, American Academy of Assisted Reproductive Technology Attorneys, Washington, D.C.
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