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According to HFEA figures, the numbers of sperm donors have gone *up* in the two years since the ending of anonymity, thus reversing a three year decline. The 307 donors in 2006 was 48 more than in 2005, and the highest figure since 2001.

I don't have a huge problem with sperm donors being paid, or the numbers of children per donor being increased, but we should never go back to the days of anonymous donors. The donor-conceived are the ones who matter in this, not the parents, not the clinics, and not the donors.

If a sperm donor wants to be anonymous, then he simply shouldn't be a sperm donor. I was a sperm donor over 20 years ago, and if I have any genetic children looking for me, I've made it as easy as possible for them to find me.

Allen Hoorn

I have been scouring the MCL to try and determine what the law in Michigan says on this matter. Unfortunately, it seems that our legislature hasn't quite come up with anything yet on the subject. Am I wrong in this assessment of the state of the laws in Michigan with regards to anonymity?

If I was forced to wiegh in on this issue from a logical standpoint, I would say that a child's right to know the identity of an anonymous sperm donor should only outweigh the right of the sperm donor to privacy in cases where infringing the donor's right would produce indisputable and immediate benefit to the child. Of course, I am just a student, so that is my opinion and not necessarily a valid legal argument.

Jeanne M Hannah

Hello Allen,

You are correct. Michigan has not addressed this issue in the legislature.

I believe that you have a valid point and that balancing the need of the child to know against the privacy rights of the donor is a good approach. If, for example a child experiences some kind of health problem -- needs a kidney transplant, for example -- wouldn't it be a good thing if that child could find his biological father and could follow the trail to some other children sired by the same sperm in search for a match and a successful transplant? It might save a life. I say that saving the child's right trumps privacy. Jeanne Hannah

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