Human Genetics Alert

Unit 112 Aberdeen House 22-24 Highbury Grove, London N5 2EA
Phone: 020 7704 6100 fax: 020 7359 8423


For immediate release


HGA and The Bulletin of Medical Ethics launch series of ‘Ethics Cafes’

Human Genetics Alert and the Bulletin of Medical Ethics today announced the first of a series of ‘Ethics Cafes’, informal and free-of-charge events held on a monthly basis in a bar in Islington. The first of these is entitled:

Who's Afraid of Designer Babies? 

A discussion about the right to choose your baby...

... and the eugenics of choice

Dr Bill Albert, a disabled activist and member of the government's Human Genetics Commission, will lead a dialogue on issues such as:

  • Do you want a society that selects and rejects embryos according to their genetic make-up?
  • Does the choice to abort a disabled foetus make eugenics acceptable in our society?

Following the historical example of French philosophers, and with the more recent proliferation of "Science Cafes" around Britain , the Ethics Cafes are being run by Human Genetics Alert in partnership with the Bulletin of Medical Ethics. Topics for discussion will alternate between human genetics and broader medical ethics issues.

The aim of these events is to increase public engagement with and debate on social and ethical issues of our time. A speaker will summarise the key issues and highlight the main arguments surrounding the topic. The audience is encouraged to participate in discussing the issues further.

Notes for editors:

  1. The first of these free discussion events will take place at 6.30pm on Tues 3rd June 2003 , at the Bierodrome, 173-4 Upper Street , Islington N1
  1. Human Genetics Alert and the Bulletin of Medical Ethics (the organisers of this series of events) are Islington-based organisations. HGA is an independent watchdog group funded by a leading charity. The Bulletin of Medical Ethics is a monthly journal which carries news and peer-reviewed articles on medical ethics issues.
  1. Claire Bayntun is available (details are below) if you would like any further information - 020 7704 6100, or email,