Thursday, April 30, 2015

Ontario Civil Liberties Association supports our freedom of expression rights

Ontario Civil Liberties Association supports our freedom of expression rights: OCLA position paper on institutional bias against pro-life campaigners in Ontario
"The Ontario Civil Liberties Association (OCLA) is opposed to the evident statutory and institutional bias that exists in Ontario against the free-expression rights of pro-life campaigners.... 
Regarding the said unconstitutional statute, Ontario’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act contains a section (s. 65(5.7)) which explicitly excludes all information about abortions, including any statistical data and charts, from any access. This means that there is no right whatsoever in Ontario for any individual or association to access government information “relating to the provision of abortion services” [2]. 
The statutory exclusion was not justified during parliamentary discussion (members were silent on the exclusion), is contrary to the principle of transparency and accountability in a free and democratic society, and is a violation of Canada’s obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights [3]. 
The exclusion effectively prohibits expression on the excluded records, and thereby violates the Charter right to free expression of the requesters of the information [4]. 
The OCLA seeks to raise the concern that there is palpable institutional bias against pro-life advocates in Ontario and that this is harmful to society and substantively unjust towards members of the community [5]."
More here:
Civli liberties association says withholding abortion stats an affront to democracy

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Taking care of our elderly - a call to action

My sister Maureen and I have been humbled and blessed. Three weeks ago we started volunteering at a long term care facility near our home.

When we signed up we told the volunteer coordinator that we would like to do one on one visits with residents. She asked us which residents we would like to visit. We both wanted to work with those who were in most need. That of course was the Alzheimer and dementia floor.

For us to get to know some of the residents Lucie suggested we participate in their activity program for a few weeks. So we have been doing that.

Many of the residents seemed unaware that we were there. Others seemed withdrawn, yet lit up and smiled during the activity when they were asked if they would like to participate. Many did, and some were just content to watch. These are all lovely people. Worthy of human dignity and care.

Today I read ARPA's "Respectfully Submitted" Policy report for Parliamentarians. It is on assisted suicide and euthanasia. I couldn't help but wonder what might happen to these precious people in this home, when assisted suicide becomes law in Canada.

I will write to my MP Mauril Belanger using ARPA's easy mailer (see below). I hope you will too.

This new policy report is a way for you to draw this issue to the attention of your MP. This is important, as there is less than a year before Canada is left with no laws at all restricting assisted suicide. We have provided 3 EasyMail letters and want to encourage you to send one of these to your MP. We were discouraged to see only 14 EasyMail letters sent last month on this issue - from across Canada. We can do better!

Before you send your EasyMail letter, please read the report yourself - you should find it well worth your time. Then, choose one of the following letters to send today:
3.     Letter 3: More detailed call for MP to do the right thing (no reference to policy report)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Press conference on FOI constitutional challenge in Toronto

Here are my remarks at the Ontario Legislature today.



Everyone agrees that transparency and accountability are required from government.

Politicians accept this. The public demands it.

But we have a government right here in Ontario, that has acted to hide information, while saying the opposite.

And they did this in a bill, whose title ironically, was about this very topic: accountability.

The bill was called the Broader Public Sector Accountability Act. It changed the rules by excluding all information regarding one particular, controversial, tax-payer funded medical procedure from the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act or FIPPA.

You see, I am a pro-life blogger. My blog is called Run with Life. One of the things I do is comment on the abortion situation in Ontario. In order to do that effectively, I need access to accurate information regarding abortions that are performed in Ontario. In the past I have been able to get this information by submitting freedom of information requests to the Ontario Ministry of Health.

I then write about what I receive. And I comment on it.

For example, I found out through these requests of OHIP billing records, that there were over 44,000 abortions performed in Ontario in 2010. That's about 45% more than reported by the Canadian Institute of Health information. Now that this law is in place, I can no longer obtain these numbers for Ontario.

That's because all abortion information is now excluded from FIPPA: Abortion numbers. Abortion complications. Abortion costs to the taxpayer. The demographic statistics of women who have abortions: their age, how many abortions they have, and the gestational age of the fetus at termination. Anything and everything about abortion is now being hidden by the Ontario government.

I learned this when a freedom of information request I made was denied in 2012.
I had requested a chart which set out the number of abortions performed in Ontario during a specific trimester and during a specific time. My request was denied because of the changes to FIPPA.

I challenged that decision before the Information and Privacy Commissioner, who rejected my appeal. I then asked the Commissioner to review that decision, arguing that it was unconstitutional. The Commissioner refused to review its decision. So I took the matter to court and asked them to review the Commissioner’s decision, because I believed it was unconstitutional.

Throughout the entire process, the government of Ontario opposed me and opposed my challenge. One month before our day in court, and after my lawyer had filed all of our written legal documents, the government gave me the chart I requested--outside of FIPPA--and then took the position that my case was moot and should not be heard. They did this after I incurred $30,000 in legal fees and after opposing me for 2 and a half years.

If the government can do this with abortion information, the government can do it with anything.

We can't let the government of Ontario continue to hide information that Ontarians and all Canadians have a right to access...

It's anti-democratic. It's unethical. And it's just plain wrong.

What this also means is that not only the public, but the media as well, can't get abortion information through access requests. Freedom of the press is severely curtailed.

And these changes happened in secret. There is no recorded debate in Hansard of the change to FIPPA. No debate in the Ontario legislature; no discussion in committee hearings. It was snuck into law, with no explanation.

In fact, after I discovered the change, I tried repeatedly to get Kathleen Wynne or her Health Minister, or my local MPP to tell me why they did this. They were unable, or unwilling, to give me a reason.

I think we can all agree, that regardless of our own views on this very controversial topic, hiding any and all information, about a publicly funded medical procedure hinders the public’s ability to hold the government to account and sets a dangerous precedent.

This is why, together with ARPA Canada, we have launched this legal challenge. We argue that the government’s decision to exclude generic abortion information from FIPPA is unconstitutional.



WeNeedaLAW at Queen's Park

It's a cold blustery day here at Queen's Park in Toronto. Where our Ontario Legislature sits. Where our politicians make laws. 

WeNeedaLAW volunteers were out in full force this morning depositing 100,000 flags on the lawn. To represent the 100,000 babies lost to abortion every year in Canada. A tragedy by any other name.

Unfortunately the organizers weren't allowed to insert the flags into the lawn, but had to lay them down instead. The message is still the same. Pre-born children die every year in Canada because of abortion. The message is what it is. A tragedy.

I hope Kathleen Wynne was watching.

This afternoon at 2:00 ARPA Canada will be holding a press conference inside the legislature to announce a legal challenge about one particular law that passed right here at Queen's Park. A very undemocratic law. Stay tuned.






ARPA launches legal challenge in Toronto

Image
For immediate release from the Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada

April 22, 2015

ARPA CANADA TO MAKE ANNOUNCEMENT ABOUT LEGAL ACTION
TORONTO – In an afternoon press conference in the Queen’s Park Press Gallery, the Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada will provide details on a constitutional challenge they filed earlier in the day. Niki Pennings, spokesperson for WeNeedaLAW.ca, will also be speaking about why WeNeedaLAW.ca has placed 100,000 pink and blue flags on the lawn in Queen’s Park.

“The 100,000 flags represent the approximately 100,000+ human lives that are ended by abortion every year in Canada,” said Ms. Pennings. “The courts have consistently spoken to the responsibility of government to enact laws that protect pre-born human rights and the Ontario government is not exempt from this responsibility.”

Over one hundred and fifty volunteers helped place the 100,000 pink and blue flags at Queen’s Park. The flags cover the entire south-east lawn.

As for the constitutional challenge, André Schutten, lawyer for ARPA Canada would only say that, “The court action we are initiating is about justice. Justice requires accountability. Each victim of abortion is a human being. Not only does every victim need to be accounted for, but public policy itself should be open to evaluation and scrutiny by the taxpayer and voter.”

The flag display will be set up until 4:00pm.

What:
 ARPA Canada Press Conference
When: Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Where: Queen’s Park Press Gallery
Time: 2:00 PM

Sunday, April 19, 2015

1,000,000 postcards coming soon to a mailbox near you

CCBR and CLCY have set a goal to accomplish the biggest pro-life campaign in Canadian History.
“This is the biggest pro-life campaign in Canadian history,” says Jonathon Van Maren, communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform. “The#No2Trudeau campaign has two primary goals: to revitalize and expand the pro-life base, and begin rebuilding a public consensus on the abortion issue.”
Van Maren says Canada has become a majority pro-abortion country in the last 40 years. However, numerous public opinion polls have shown that most Canadians are unaware of Canada’s complete lack of restrictions on abortion. 
In response, the #No2Trudeau campaign plans to distribute one million information postcards across Canada, conduct research to identify pro-life voters and mobilize volunteers to support pro-life candidates in the upcoming election. The campaign also includes a speaking tour making stops in 23 cities across Canada.
Once those post cards start arriving in people's mailboxes across the country, the pro-abortions will be having kittens. In fact I think some of them already are. 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Top Trillium executive on Sunshine list

Suzanne Fortin makes a good point.

So what does COHEN BARRACK, ANDREA, CEO of Trillium make? A nice big whopping $209,572 a year. Not bad I must say.


And I wonder what she also makes as Chairperson of International Planned Parenthood for Canada?

Fake Person doesn't want any public money to go to crisis pregnancy centres.

But I guess it's just fine and dandy that the CEO of the very same organization that doles out our money, makes over 200,000 a year, but revokes money from an organization that helps support women through crisis pregnancies.

Good grief.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

So who quashed funding for CPC?

Remember when Fake Person complained to Trillium, and then Trillium revoked funding to Pregnancy Options and Support Centre in Sarnia?

Guess who the CEO is of the Ontario Trillium Foundation? Andrea Cohen Barrack

And guess who the Chairperson is of International Planned Parenthood for Canada? Andrea Cohen Barrack

The one and the same person.

So let's see.

A government organization, that doles out our tax dollars, is headed by someone, who also just happens to head up an organization, that promotes abortion as a valid and neutral choice. And then the former organization revokes funding for another organization who does not promote abortion.

Isn't that the interesting little story?

Friday, April 10, 2015

That pesky thing called conscience


M-590 — March 26, 2015 — Mr. Komarnicki (Souris—Moose Mountain) — That, in the opinion of the House, all Members of Parliament should be allowed to vote freely on all matters of conscience.

So how will the Liberals and NDP vote on this motion? I guess we'll find out.
"...the safest course is to do nothing against one's conscience. With this secret, we can enjoy life and have no fear from death." Voltaire

Thursday, April 9, 2015

941 stillbirth and livebirth abortions done in 2013-2014

Below are numbers for late-term stillbirth and livebirth abortions (Code P96.4 "Termination of pregnancy, affecting fetus and newborns") from CIHI for 2013/2014.

I reported on this information previously here and here for 2010/2011.

It's important to note that there are two different outcomes for these late-term abortions coded with P96.4 "Termination of pregnancy, affecting fetus and newborns". Some of the babies were delivered stillborn (780). And some were delivered alive (161).

Notice that Quebec reports neither stillbirths nor livebirths for code P96.4, so we have no idea how many are being done in Quebec. Last time I did receive numbers for the livebirth abortions for Quebec but not for the stillbirth abortions. CIHI told me this is because:
"Quebec data is not included. As part of the Agreement between the Government of Quebec and the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI), the data transmitted by Quebec and held by CIHI may only be used for the mandate given to CIHI by Quebec. Therefore, CIHI is not authorized to provide you with the requested data for Quebec."
When I asked for clarification on this,CIHI said:
"Data transmitted to us by a jurisdiction still belongs to the jurisdiction in question. We are authorized to provide Québec’s aggregate data or information only when the request falls within the mandate in the agreement between CIHI and the Government of Québec. Media requests do not fall within the mandate."
Notice that the numbers of livebirth abortions this time, i.e. for 2013/14 (161) are higher than last time, i.e. for 2010/11 (158) and don't even include Quebec numbers (there were 21 livebirth abortions reported in Quebec in 2010/2011).

Both stillbirth and livebirth abortions are on the increase in Canada. Last time CIHI reported 727 stillbirth abortions compared to 780 this time.

As for the livebirth abortions, we can assume that at least some of these babies were probably aborted because of serious fetal abnormalities, as reported in this National Post story at 5 months gestation.

And the National Post also reported that:
"many hospitals make it a policy to first terminate the fetus in-utero, perhaps using lethal injection... Dr. Wendy Norman, a clinical professor at the University of British Columbia, confirmed in an email to the Post that abortions “performed intentionally in major centres for pregnancies over 20 weeks would almost certainly include a technique … to induce fetal demise PRIOR to the delivery of the fetus.”
If what Dr. Norman says is true, this would mean the child would die before it exited the mother's body, which means it would not be classified as a livebirth abortion. Yet these current stats confirm doctors are still performing abortions resulting in livebirths, so what is going on here?

I suspect that some of these babies are born alive because they are not giving the baby the injection first to stop its heart. But I am only guessing.

In fact all we have is speculation, since there are no reasons attached to any of these deaths. Are these livebirth babies tossed aside and left on their own, struggling to survive until they die? Are they done on compassionate grounds so the mother can hold her child before the child dies? If so, then why isn't the child allowed to be born at term and placed in perinatal palliative care? Is it because we don't offer perinatal palliative care to pregnant women in these difficult situations? That would be true compassion. And if we don't offer this option, why not?

And why won't Quebec let us see their livebirth abortion stats? If I could speak French I would request the information from the Quebec government through access to information.

What we do know about these babies who are subject to late term abortions, is that some of them are born alive (161), then they die. What are the reasons for these abortions? Why are the numbers increasing?

And of course CIHI is not ATIPable, so whatever CIHI won't divulge is completely hidden from us. If the data still resided with Statistics Canada, I could do an access to information request and ask to see this agreement with Quebec. But I can't do that with CIHI.

Lots of questions, very few answers.



Monday, April 6, 2015

The intolerance of the progressives

There are a lot of seriously not nice people out there in the twitter sphere ready to draw and quarter MP James Lunney because of his views on evolution.

So what do these people say? Read for yourself, some of it's pretty disgusting: Me smart you dumb.

I think it must make them feel important. Or something. A lot of people really can't stand the fact that some people have different beliefs than they do. Why is that? Are they so unsure of their own beliefs that they need to make fun of someone else's beliefs?

And why is this intolerance so often directed towards Christians. Why do these people hate Christians so much?

This seems to be a mob mentality that these people somehow feel obliged to follow.

Maybe they feel like they belong to an elite group who knows better than those stupid backward Christians. Maybe they get a self-righteous kick out of denigrating someone else's beliefs. Pathetic.

And the "progressives" like to talk about tolerance. What a bunch of hypocrites.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Christine Elliott: hiding abortion information not on agenda

I've received repeated emails from Christine Elliott in her bid for the Conservative leadership. 

I've repeatedly responded to her, asking her what she would do to repeal the Liberals decision to hide abortion statistics.

Finally, I responded to one of her emails with this:
Dear Christine, 
I don't think you are listening. You aren't doing or saying anything about the Liberals hiding abortion information. And you don't reply to my emails about it. Nope. You're not listening. You're ignoring. You're sticking your head in the sand. Wait until the Liberals decide to hide something that you do care about. Because it will happen. Will you listen then? 
Sincerely,
Patricia Maloney
Here is Christine's response to me:
Dear Pat, 
Thanks for taking the time to write. I apologize for the delay in getting back to you and appreciate your patience. 
I am running to be our next Leader so we can rebuild the Ontario PC Party, and so we can rebuild our province. 
I want to thank you for bringing this matter to my attention.  At this time however, this is not an issue that is on my agenda for this particular leadership campaign, but I appreciate your input. I encourage you to contact the Office of the Leader of the Opposition, at the conclusion of this campaign, to further discuss this issue. 
With the right Leader and the right team, I know we can build a better future for our province and our children. 
I am ready to lead. I am ready to win. 
Sincerely,
Christine Elliott
There you have it. This affront to our democratic rights, just isn't on Christine Elliott's agenda.