October 4, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Pro-life activists across the country held rallies Thursday calling on provincial governments to end taxpayer funding of abortion.
The national initiative, organized by Campaign Life Coalition, aimed to raise Canadians’ attention to the $80 million the provinces spend every year on a highly-controversial medically-unnecessary procedure.
The campaign kicked off with a rally in Newfoundland on Saturday, Sept. 28. On Thursday, pro-life activists staged rallies at the provincial legislatures in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Winnipeg, Manitoba, and Edmonton, Alberta, as well as mini-rallies in Ontario in front of the riding offices of 58 out of the province's 106 MPPs.
In Ontario, numbers at the mini-rallies ranged from half a dozen to over 40 people.
“It’s ludicrous to ask us to open up our wallets for these killings when the province is drowning in debt, and genuine areas of health care are neglected, such as treating autistic kids, fixing doctor and nurse shortages, improving elder care and buying MRI machines,” said Alissa Golob, Campaign Life Coalition’s youth coordinator.
“It's one thing for an individual to make a personal choice to kill a baby in the womb, but it's quite another to expect the rest of us to pay for it.”
In one of the largest turnouts, about 200 people rallied against abortion funding outside the provincial legislature in Edmonton. Sharon Milan of CLC Alberta said 5 pro-abortion protesters, all men, showed up as well.
Milan told LifeSiteNews that many of the youthful participants at the Edmonton rally had never before attended a pro-life event and that their enthusiasm was evident.
“It was very encouraging to meet so many new and enthusiastic pro-lifers at the legislature,” Milan said. “The participants at the rally were energetic and dedicated towards the strategy of defunding abortion.”
“Defunding abortion will help Alberta put 13 million dollars toward life-giving procedures instead of life-ending abortions,” Milan pointed out, adding that by “working together with other pro-life groups, we can continue to fight against the culture of death.”
Speakers at the Edmonton rally included Lauren Kyfiuk of the Canadian Center for Bioethical Reform, Rosey Rosenke, Executive Director of the Wilberforce Project, and Denise Mountenay of Canada Silent No More, among others.
In Winnipeg, about eighty pro-life advocates were reportedly drowned out by around 200 pro-abortion counter-protesters at the Manitoba legislature. A pro-life attendee told LifeSiteNews the pro-abortion crowd “rudely made it impossible for most people to hear the prolife speakers.”
“The prochoice group had a lady with a pot banging it loudly behind the small group of prolifers. A megahorn was also used to lead the antilife group,” the attendee added.
The Halifax Defund Abortion rally was attended by about 60 pro-lifers.
Ellen Chesal, executive director of Campaign Life Nova Scotia, said that while the pro-life turnout for the event was commendable, about 30 loud abortion advocates drowned the rally speakers out. Audio recordings of the speeches are available on the CLC Nova Scotia website.
Last Saturday's rally outside the Confederation Building in St. John’s, Newfoundland, was attended by 40 pro-life advocates who displayed “Defund Abortion” and “Not from my wallet!” signs to passers-by. About twenty pro-abortion counter protesters stood behind the pro-life group, with one holding a sign reading “Outlaw heterosexuality.”
Campaign Life Coalition’s Youth Division started the Defund Abortion taxpayer defense initiative two years ago, with a rally attended by over 2,300 protesters at Queen’s Park in Toronto. In addition to subsequent rallies at the Ontario legislature, in 2012 CLC Youth organized its first province-wide Defund Abortion Mini-Rally campaign, where 47 MPP offices were targeted with simultaneous rallies.
More Defund Abortion rallies are planned for the spring of 2014 in Quebec, Saskatchewan and British Columbia.
Information about all Defund Abortion rallies is available by contacting Alissa Golob by phone at 1-800-730-5358 x. 238, by email at [email protected], and on Campaign Life Coalition's Defund Abortion campaign website.