The Ethical Cost of Immortal Research

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

7:00 p.m. on ZOOM* 

If you are not a member but would like to join us, email 

to request a link to our ZOOM meeting. We always welcome new members. 

Henrietta’s cells are vastly important to scientific research 

This presentation will discuss the HeLa cells of Henrietta Lacks. It also explains how Henrietta and her family were disadvantaged and their generational wealth was stolen.  

Henrietta Lacks' cancer cells - code named HeLa - were taken without her knowledge in 1951. They became one of the most important tools in medicine - with damaging consequences for her family, many of whom often struggled to get access to the very health care advances their mother’s cells helped make possible. In addition, the presentation will focus on concrete and practical solutions to ethical questions, either already applied or envisaged for the future.

Norma Domey 

B.Sc. Biochemistry, M.Sc. Toxicology
University of Western Ontario

Norma Domey is a Canadian with Black African ancestry, and multi-generational roots in Nova Scotia. She is the great-niece of human rights activist Viola Desmond (featured on $10 Canadian bank notes), and has herself been engaged in anti-racist activities for decades.

Norma is the National Vice-President of The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC), and the Advisory Board Member, Centre of Expertise for Mental Health in the Workplace.

2020 - Norma mobilized science professionals to take action on racism, and promoted the acknowledgement of public science work done by racialized scientists among PIPSC members.

She is the ex-Chair of Environment & Climate Change Canada, Visible Minorities Network (National Capital Region) and Co-Chair of the National Federal Black Employees Women’s Caucus. She was recently appointed to the Federal Black Employees (Multi-)Union Advisory Committee, and participated as a Panelist in an event on Advancing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in the Sciences, with the Society of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry (SETAC). 

Norma Domey was 2021 Panelist:  Anti-Racist Science, from cell to society: Real Solutions for Real Issues at Canadian Science Policy Conference (CSPC). 

2021 She published CSPC Magazine article entitled  “Conflict Resolution: Science vs Policy”.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software