Opinion Former Article

BHA urges legal change on organ donation

The British Humanist Association (BHA) has today urged on the Government to push ahead with legal reform on organ donation.

Naomi Phillips, BHA Public Affairs Officer, said, 'While we welcome a commitment by Government to launch a public education campaign aimed to increase the number of registered organ donors, we are disappointed that the Organ Donation Taskforce - to whose investigation we contributed - has recommended no change in the law on organ donation. We strongly support change to a system of 'presumed consent' for organ donation and most of us would not object to our body parts and organs being donated and used for good ends.'

Ms Phillips continued, 'We maintain that a system of 'presumed consent' is likely to increase the number of organs available for transplantation, and that this will not only help to prevent many more unnecessary deaths, it will help to combat the traffic in organs, and in human beings for the purpose of removal of organs, from outside of Europe - trafficking which creates serious ethical issues and is contributing to systematic human rights violations of some of the most vulnerable people from across the world.'

'Policy-making must be based on evidence, rational decision-making and that which seeks to maximise the well-being of individuals and so society more generally. This can be done while also making provision to accommodate the personal wishes of individuals based on other considerations.'


For comment or information, contact Naomi Phillips at naomi@humanism.org.uk or 020 7079 3585

The British Humanist Association (BHA) is the national charity representing and supporting the non-religious and campaigning for an end to religious privilege and discrimination based on religion or belief. The BHA contributes to debate on a wide range of ethical issues from stem cell research to sex education, and acts as a unique watchdog and lobbying organisation.

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