Circle Surrogacy and Egg Donation Founder John Weltman Contributed to an Article in The SciTech Lawyer on SPAR
Circle Surrogacy and Egg Donation founder and president John Weltman contributed to an important piece that appeared in The SciTech Lawyer this past summer. The piece is called, Wishes Granted: The Science Behind HIV Positive Dads and Their HIV Negative Kids.
The SciTech Lawyer is a quarterly publication for the Science & Technology Law Section of the American Bar Association. Its mission is to provide information about current developments in law, science, medicine, and technology. The Special Program of Assisted Reproduction (SPAR), the program that makes HIV-positive parents able to have HIV-negative children, welcomed its first baby in 1999, yet a majority of people have never heard of this technology.
Since the first SPAR baby was born in May 1999, there have been 272 births via SPAR, which involves sperm washing (the same can be done with eggs) for safe IVF transfer. They have had a 100 percent success rate with these procedures. SPAR is becoming more accessible and more affordable, however, opposition to HIV-positive individuals becoming parents via IVF is still an unfortunate reality. Moreover, many men and women with HIV assume becoming a biological parent is not an option. This is why increased awareness is essential. We hope you take a few moments to read Wishes Granted: The Science Behind HIV Positive Dads and Their HIV Negative Kids, and help us spread the word about this miraculous technology that we have seen make dreams come true for several families.
Just in time for Mother’s Day, the news site Elite Daily released a short documentary on surrogacy, featuring a Circle surrogate and her family, a parent through our program, and Jen Rachman, Circle’s New York area representative.
Circle surrogate Jenna Mancuso and her husband talk about surrogacy as a way to give back, matching with their intended parent, and gaining a long-lasting relationship. Michael Oppedisano, Jenna’s intended father, shares his experience, his desire to build a family, and his views on how surrogacy is changing the modern family.
In an article about the trend of developing countries shutting their doors to intended parents seeking surrogacy options, the New York Times asked Circle’s President and Founder, John Weltman, for his insight.
“I am very much in favor of less expensive options for people, but to date there has not been a single place I’ve felt comfortable sending people to,” John told the paper. “I would caution dramatically against new and up-and-coming places like Cambodia, and Panama, because the legal framework is not secure.”
The second season premiere of På bortebane, a Norwegian television show that sends Norway's politicians abroad to have their views challenged, took on the issue of surrogacy.
Minister Torbjørn Røe Isaksen, who opposes surrogacy, traveled to the United States, to meet with a number of pro-surrogacy advocates. To gain insight into the legal aspects of surrogacy, Minister Isaksen interviewed Circle's President and Founder, John Weltman. John made it clear that a child who comes into the world through surrogacy is the responsibility of the intended parents, from the time the contract is signed. Isaksen also spoke with John and his husband's son, Zachary, who was born through surrogacy.
By the end of the episode, Isaksen acknowleged that his views on the issue of surrogacy had changed and that the issue was more nuanced than he had realized.