SURREY, BC, August 3, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Evidence suggests that ultrasound ads may be targeting Indo-Canadian groups to determine the sex of their unborn babies, which in turn may lead to abortions based on sex-selection, as is happening in numerous countries throughout the world.
Two Punjabi-language newspapers, the Mississauga-based Ajit Weekly and the Hamdard Weekly, published in Toronto, New York, Vancouver, California and India, have published adds for ultrasound clinics, the CBC reports. These papers, which are distributed throughout Canada, encouraged couples to discover the sex of their unborn baby.
One ad provides a phone number for BC Punjabi as well as English speakers, who will help them to make appointments at Koala Labs, an ultrasound clinic in Blaine, Washington. According to the CBC, the ad states, “You are told the sex immediately.”
Charan Gill, head of the immigrant Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society, claims that these ultrasound ads are being used to encourage sex-selection that results in female children being aborted.
Gill, who fought against the newspaper ads for ultrasound clinics 15 years ago, stated, “It’s really, really sad that some newspapers, for sake of money, are misleading the public. The end result is they will tell the sex of the baby so that people that don’t want baby girls can abort it.”
The idea that female children are less desirable is based in the Indian tradition of arranged marriages in which the bride’s father must give a costly dowry to the family of the groom at his daughter’s wedding. One advertisement outside of an ultrasound clinic summed it up, “Pay 500 rupees now and save 50,000 later.” In India women are often still looked upon as second class citizens, receiving a lower level of education and lower quality health care.
In a 2006 article entitled “Canada’s Lost Daughters,” Andrea Mrozek, Manager of Research and Communication for the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada, noted a significant imbalance in the male-female ratio in certain areas where there is a large ethnic group.
According to a Statistics Canada census, in Surrey, where nearly a third of the immigrant population is from India, the sex-ratio was highly imbalanced. In 2003, for example, instead of the normal ratio of 105 boys to every 100 girls, “there were 109. In 2000, it was nearly 111, in 1999, 107, and in 1998, 110.”
Referring to this and other imbalances in communities with a large specific ethnic group, the report noted, “since the communities mentioned above have seen hundreds of thousands of live births in the last decade, the number of missing daughters may be somewhere in the thousands.”
According to Mrozek sex-selection is a factor, the CBC reports, and female abortions may explain why.
Mrozek told LifeSiteNews.com, “Ultrasounds are obviously not the problem. Sex-selection for abortion is very difficult to combat because there is no easy way to track the connection between ultrasound clinics and abortions.” Speaking about a possible solution, she stated, “cracking down on ultrasound clinics would in no way help the situation.”
The real issue, she continued, is “whether we are prepared as a society to identify that certain reasons for having an abortion are not good. Are Canadians prepared to question whether there is a bad reason for abortion?”
Read related LifeSiteNews coverage:
7,000 Unborn Girls Die From Sex-Selection Abortion Daily in India
China, India and Canada Kill UN Resolution Against Sex Selected Abortions
INDIA’S TOP COURT BANS SEX-SELECTION ABORTION ADVERTISING
BABY SEX-SELECTION HITS AMERICA
500,000 Girls Aborted Per Year in India new Study Finds