More than three dozen people marked the 34th anniversary of the court decision that struck down Canada’s abortion law with a protest in Langley near the intersection of Fraser Hwy. and 200th St. on on Friday, Jan. 28. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

More than three dozen people marked the 34th anniversary of the court decision that struck down Canada’s abortion law with a protest in Langley near the intersection of Fraser Hwy. and 200th St. on on Friday, Jan. 28. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Protesters mark 34th anniversary of court decision that ruled against Canadian abortion law

Langley demonstration organizer says Canada is only western democracy without a law as result

More than three dozen people marked the 34th anniversary of the court decision that struck down Canada’s abortion law with a protest in Langley City at the intersection of Fraser Hwy. and 200th St. on Friday afternoon, Jan. 28.

From 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. they held signs that read “34 years is enough we need a law,” “Canada has no abortion laws” and “protect pre born human rights.”

Organizer Elyse Vroom said they were “there to call attention to the fact that abortion is allowed in Canada at any stage of pregnancy, for any reason.”

READ ALSO: Flags on Langley church lawn represent number of abortions, protest organizer says

On Jan. 28, 1988, the Supreme Court of Canada, in a 5-2 decision, ruled that the Canadian law requiring abortion to be approved by a therapeutic abortion committee (TAC) of three doctors violated the Canadian Charter Of Rights guarantee of security of the person.

Under the law at the time, abortion was only permitted if the committee of doctors ruled continuation of a pregnancy would cause a woman medical harm.

There have been two attempts to introduce a new federal abortion law since the Morgentaler ruling, in 1988 and 1989, that failed to find enough votes in the House of Commons and Senate.

More than three dozen people marked the 34th anniversary of the court decision that struck down Canada’s abortion law with a protest in Langley at the intersection of Fraser Hwy. and 200th St. on on Friday, Jan. 28. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

More than three dozen people marked the 34th anniversary of the court decision that struck down Canada’s abortion law with a protest in Langley at the intersection of Fraser Hwy. and 200th St. on on Friday, Jan. 28. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

“The Court saw value in a law protecting the fetus but said that the way the law was worded at the time was unconstitutional,” Vroom said.

“Parliament had the responsibility to create a new law that considered both the rights of women and the right to life of all human beings, including pre-born children. But Parliament never did that, and now they actively thwart any meaningful conversation on the issue.”

“Abortion is a difficult topic for many reasons,” Vroom continued, “but if we can’t talk about it, we will remain the only democracy in the world that gives no legal protection to vulnerable pre-born children.”

READ MORE: Pink flags on Langley church grounds raise awareness about sex-selective abortion

Vroom is a staffer with We Need A Law, an online lobby group which describes itself as “a brand new pro-life initiative that is being initiated with an earnest desire that the right to life of our pre-born neighbour is protected by law.

Figures available from Statistics Canada show the total number of abortions among women of childbearing age (15-44) reported to the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) was 84,000 in 2019, down from a high of 109,000 in 2011.


Is there more to the story? Email: dan.ferguson@langleyadvancetimes.com

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