Vancouver crisis pregnancy center sues CTV over ‘misleading’ sting investigation
VANCOUVER, British Columbia, May 31, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A British Columbia pregnancy center that was the subject of a CTV-BC investigative sting in December 2011 is suing the TV network for “defamation, breach of contract and misrepresentation, and retractions and corrections.”
“While we do consider the sting operation to have been unethical as it involved the undercover reporter misrepresenting herself and breaching our Client Services Form contract, our main concern is that the CTV story left viewers with the impression that our charity misrepresents its services and misleads women in crisis, which is absolutely untrue,” said Brian Norton, executive director of the Crisis Pregnancy Centre of Vancouver, to LifeSiteNews.
Norton argued that CTV-BC showed their bias by seeking commentary almost exclusively from abortion advocates with a “political agenda against all pregnancy centers in the province.”
Norton’s opinion is shared by Maurice Vellacott, MP for Saskatoon-Wanuskewin, who castigated the report as “one-sided,” saying it was “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.”
Norton told LifeSiteNews that contrary to the impression left on viewers, all medical information provided at the Pregnancy Centre is “entirely accurate.”
“When CTV interviewed medical expert Dr. Dan Reilly of McMaster University, the bioethicist confirmed that the Vancouver Centre’s information is accurate and current with medical literature. However, CTV selectively chose to not disclose this finding during any of its three broadcasts, despite it being the asserted purpose for the investigation.”
The pregnancy centre also claims that it was defamed by CTV-BC when the station reported that the counselor spent inordinate amounts of time discussing the risks of abortions.
“A ‘long time’ was spent ‘discussing the risks’ of abortion at the Vancouver Centre only because the Undercover Reporter directed the conversation to cover these topics ... and insist[ed] on discussing only the option of abortion, and specifically its medical risks,” the centre states in the complaint, as reported by Courthouse News Service.
The pregnancy centre also claims that CTV-BC’s program falsely accused the Vancouver centre of misleading prospective clients by not telling them up front that it does not refer for abortions. Norton related that the Center’s website and Client Services Form which was signed by the undercover reporter make this fact “absolutely clear.”
Norton said that the CTV-BC’s broadcast and web article continues to cause harm to the charity’s reputation and its ability to help women in a crisis pregnancy situation. In addition to damages, the Crisis Pregnancy Centre is seeking a retraction and correction of all video and print versions of the CTV-BC investigation.
Contact CTV News British Columbia:
Jon Woodward, ctvbc.ca
Suite 300, 750 Burrard St.
Vancouver, B.C. V6Z 1X5
Ph: (604) 609-6333
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