Testimony in Support of HB611

TESTIMONY IN SUPPORT OF HB611
AN ACT RELATIVE TO REPROGRAMMED HUMAN SKIN CELLS FOR EMBRYONIC STEM CELL RESEARCH

Joint Committee on Public health
May 10, 2010


Massachusetts Family Institute (MFI) is a non-profit public policy organization dedicated to strengthening the family and the traditional Judeo-Christian values upon which the family is based. We support HB 611 because it seeks to prevent the use of living human embryos solely for the purpose of destroying them. Embryonic stem cells are obtained by harvesting them from living embryos, up to 14 days old. HB 611 calls for reprogrammed human skin cells to be used as embryonic stem cells, thus negating the need to destroy human embryos in the name of science.

We agree with the United Nations in their opposition to the creation of human embryos solely for their destruction because it is a violation of human rights and an exploitation of women. The high demand for human eggs to create embryos will foster the exploitation of women, especially poor women, who will choose to donate their eggs in exchange for monetary consideration. Millions of women will be affected as this research goes forward. The procedure to obtain human eggs uses powerful drugs to suppress and stimulate the ovaries in order to produce an extraordinary number of eggs, which will then be harvested. This procedure has resulted in hospitalization and even death in some cases. Many of the drugs have not been studied for long-term safety nor have been FDA approved.

Human embryos are human subjects. The medical profession has known and acknowledged this for over a century. At this time in history, when modern technology has enabled us to unmistakably see and understand the intricacies of human development, we must appreciate and defend now more than ever the standards of human dignity. We need legislation that promotes research that we can all live with.

Please give HB 611 a favorable report.

Sincerely,

Maureen Vacca
Director of Public Policy

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