Radio stations pull some outlandish stunts to draw listeners, but an Ottawa radio show’s latest contest takes the prize for most eyebrow-raising. Hot 89.9 is getting heat over its Win a Baby contest. Posters for the contest show babies holding up "Win me" signs although the station obviously won’t be giving away an infant. So what’s at stake? Three in-vitro treatments worth $35,000.
The station has received hundreds of entries from infertile couples, same-sex partners and single women who can’t find Mr. Right. They’re all vying for the prize of conceiving.
Most couples can’t afford the pricey treatments, and the station’s manager claims this is a good way to raise awareness. Fertility expert Jan Silverman told CBC news that while she doesn’t agree with ‘the commodification of babies’, she’s happy the contest is drawing attention to the expense of IVF treatments and the struggles infertile couples face.
Silverman is an expert panelist on infertility and has already recommended the province pick up the tab for three IVF treatments. Currently, these treatments aren’t covered in Ontario. (They are funded in Quebec, though.)
The station will pick five finalists to share their stories on air. Listeners can then vote online before the judges select the grand prize winner.
Would you enter the contest if you couldn’t conceive? Do you think the government should pay for fertility treatments?
– Marlene Rego, Web Editor, besthealthmag.ca