OTTAWA, Ontario, February 1, 2012 ( – A pro-life Conservative MP has criticized last month’s CTV sting against British Columbia pregnancy centres with a report suggesting the broadcaster may have committed an ethics violation for pro-abortion bias.

The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council’s Code of Ethics requires broadcasters to give fair treatment to both sides of a controversial issue.


“Relying almost exclusively on views espoused by abortion providers and abortion advocacy organizations for a story about pregnancy options is like relying solely on the views espoused by tobacco companies and smokers‘ rights groups for a story about whether to take up smoking or not,” says Maurice Vellacott, MP for Saskatoon-Wanuskewin.

In response, CTV reporter Jon Woodward told LifeSiteNews, “The stories speak for themselves.”

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Vellacott’s full report is available on his website. Here are some key paragraphs:

The CTV “investigation” used hidden cameras and sent a CTV employee, posing as a pregnant woman seeking advice about her options, to two crisis pregnancy centres in BC, one in Surrey and one in Vancouver. The report gives the impression these centres mislead women by exaggerating the health risks associated with abortion. The section on health risks focused almost entirely on some comments made by a volunteer at the centre in Surrey which those who run the centre concede were inaccurate.

“It‘s of great concern when patients are given inaccurate information about the risks, harms and benefits of any medical procedure and to the extent that CTV exposed ‘wrong information‘ it‘s to be welcomed. But such exposés can‘t be one-sided. And you can‘t appreciate the extent of how onesided this report was until you know what CTV intentionally omitted from the report,” said Vellacott.

“The report ignored the scientific literature referenced in the centres‘ brochures which substantiates the centres‘ claims that abortion is associated with increased physical and psychological health risks. The reporter was told that this brochure had been reviewed and approved by 25 professional counsellors, physicians and medical researchers. None of this was mentioned in the CTV report.

“CTV also declined to interview physicians with expertise in the area of health risks associated with abortion who had been willing to corroborate, on air, the claims made in the brochure.

“Furthermore, Dr. Dan Reilly, an obstetrician/gynaecologist who also teaches ethics at McMaster, was interviewed by CTV and briefly appeared on the broadcast, but only his comments that challenged the validity of some of the comments made by the Surrey centre volunteer were aired. Dr. Reilly‘s written confirmation of the accuracy of the health risks described in the centre‘s brochure was passed on to CTV, but those comments by Dr. Reilly never made it into CTV‘s report. Also left out of CTV‘s report was the fact that the counsellor at the Vancouver centre received a complete endorsement from Dr. Reilly that her comments were medically correct.

“CTV chose to air Dr. Wendy Norman‘s comments about abortion being ‘very safe,‘ neglecting to tell the viewers that Dr. Norman is an abortion provider and researcher and ‘has practiced exclusively in the area of abortion since 1997.‘ Her comments to CTV seem to be at odds with the results of a study she herself co-authored which found that “Postabortion infection after therapeutic abortion, although uncommon, may have devastating consequences including infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and pelvic pain syndrome.” None of this was mentioned in the CTV report.