There is good news from the province on Alberta. On October 21, 2019, the NDP attempted, by way of Motion 506, to push wide access to abortion throughout the province of Alberta. This would have required among other initiatives, that all hospitals in the province provide abortion services. The motion, however, was overwhelmingly defeated by a 43 to 11 vote. Not one United Conservative Party (UCP) MLA, including Premier Jason Kenney, voted for the motion, and not one NDP MLA voted against the motion. In April 2019, the UCP won a majority government in the provincial election, with 63 seats compared to 24 for the NDP. No Liberal member was elected in that provincial election.
This controversial Motion 506 stated: “Be it resolved that the Legislative Assembly urge the government to conduct a thorough review of access to abortion services and reproductive health services in Alberta, take action to remove barriers to these services, and ensure access to safe, timely, and equitable services in all communities across the province.”
While Motion 506 is not legally binding, its purpose was to make abortions in Alberta immediately available upon request. The abortion services that the NDP were pushing, according to the debate, also included wide access to the abortion pill in remote areas, regardless of the fact that it can cause serious complications for women.
The motion was introduced by NDP MLA Marie Renaud, representing the riding of St. Albert. Her speech introducing the motion indicates an appalling ignorance of abortion law in Canada. She stated that the Supreme Court of Canada had “recognized a woman’s right to continue or terminate a pregnancy and this right was protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms”. She quite clearly had no idea what she was talking about. Nevertheless, she continued to insist throughout her speech that women in Canada had the “right” to exercise freedom and control over their bodies “for decades”. She further claimed – altogether ironically – that the “right of every human being to control their body is the most basic of human rights.” She went on to say that there were [oh horror!] 28 UCP “anti-choice” MLAs in the provincial legislature whom she then described as “28 anti-human rights MLAs”. Since when is abortion a human right? There is absolutely no “right” to abortion either in Canada or internationally. In fact, when it struck down the abortion law in 1988 in the Morgentaler case, the Supreme Court of Canada encouraged Parliament to enact a new law on abortion at their discretion in order to protect the unborn child. Ms Renaud is obviously in need of education on the topic. Unfortunately, these highly inaccurate remarks were repeated by other NDP MLAs, such as Leela Sharon Aheer, representing the riding of Chestermere-Rocky View. Unbelievably, she stated in her speech before the legislature, that women have “a right to make [this] decision which is a protected federal law.” NDP MLA Rakhi Pancholi, representing the riding of Edmonton-Whitemud, stated that abortion is a right which “nobody disputes”. Is she serious? Perhaps she was deliberately misleading the legislature or perhaps she just didn’t know the facts.
It is unfortunate that these pro-abortion MLAs have such a deep ignorance of the abortion situation in Canada.
When MLA Renaud’s Motion 506 was made public, the Alberta based pro-life group, Wilberforce Project, and the national Campaign Life Coalition, immediately sprang into action to lobby against it. Hundreds of emails and phone calls were made to MLAs. According to the Wilberforce Project, one MLA reported that he had more than 60 constituents contact him. Efforts such as this can convince cynical politicians to support life for their personal and political advancement, but they also give enormous encouragement to pro-life MLAs to do the right thing.
It is incredible that these NDP MLAs are so focused on abortion, when they talk about the necessity for “equality” in health care in their province, that they ignore the fact that roughly 3000 patients in Alberta have to be transferred to Calgary hospitals to be treated for serious cardiac incidents. Shouldn’t these latter needs be addressed instead of killing babies by abortion?
It is very difficult to carry out a mature and rational debate on the abortion issue when pro-abortion supporters either deliberately deny the facts about the abortion situation in Canada, or are entirely ignorant of them.