TORONTO, Ontario, March 26, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - More than 20,000 Ontario residents have signed petitions calling on the provincial government to end taxpayer funding of abortion, says organizer Campaign Life Coalition Youth.

The petition calls for the legislature to remove abortion from the list of services covered under the provincially-funded Ontario Health Insurance Plan. They have collected signatures from all 107 ridings and are preparing to submit them to Members of Provincial Parliament in the coming weeks.

“Pregnancy is not a disease and there is no scientific evidence that abortion is a legitimate medical procedure and therefore it should not be funded,” said Alissa Golob, Youth Coordinator for Campaign Life Coalition. “OHIP should be covering medically necessary treatment, not funding lifestyle choices.”

Campaign Life Coalition estimates that the province spends around $30-50 million every year on abortion, based on pro-abortion activist Joyce Arthur’s estimate that an abortion costs $1,000 on average and the fact that statistics have put Ontario’s annual number of abortions at between 30,000 and 50,000.

“With the government planning spending cutbacks, the McGuinty Liberals are missing an opportunity to save real money or reinvest scarce healthcare dollars for life-affirming care and treatment,” said Mary Ellen Douglas, Ontario President of Campaign Life Coalition.

The pro-life group says the funds currently used for abortion could hire 200 or more new doctors, treat 500 more children with autism, or buy 20 new MRI machines.

The petitions are part of a two-year campaign by CLC Youth to raise awareness about the money wasted on abortion funding. They have been educating the public with pamphleting blitzes in dozens of ridings so far and a Defund Abortion Rally that drew 2,300 pro-lifers to Queen’s Park in October.

Last Fall, Abacus Data Inc., found that 61 per cent of Ontarians opposed taxpayer funding of abortion for non-medically necessary abortions. Ninety-one per cent were not aware that at least $30 million of public money was being spent on abortion every year.