Campaign Life Coalition Youth is organizing its second Defund Abortion Rally to Queen’s Park on March 19, to demand an end to using taxpayer dollars to pay for abortions. On Oct. 22, 2011, an estimated 2000 people of all ages attended the first Defund Abortion Rally at the provincial legislature, but CLC’s follow-up last Fall was postponed when Hurricane Sandy forced its temporary cancellation over safety concerns.

In 2011, Campaign Life Coalition Youth (CLCY) launched a campaign to defund abortion in Ontario. CLC has calculated that the direct costs of abortion are at least $30 million, but that the total direct and indirect costs are probably ten times that amount considering there are between 32,500 and 51,000 abortions carried out in Ontario annually (the former number comes from the Canadian Institute for Health Information in 2007, the latter from a more recent Ontario Women’s Health Evidence-Based Report) and an average cost somewhere between $450 and $1200 (costs of abortions done in private facilities and hospitals in 2002). Campaign Life Coalition Youth director and rally organizer Alissa Golob told The Interim that they have taken an average of the older abortion costs to provide a conservative estimate “so the $30 million direct cost of abortion is probably low-balling it.”

Golob also noted that the low-ball $30-50 million estimate for Ontario is only the direct cost of carrying out the abortion procedure, and does not include the costs of treating complications that arise from abortions such as infections, cervical lacerations, uterine perforations, bowel and bladder injuries, endotoxic shock, pain and fevers, and haemorrhages. The Springfield, Ill.-based Elliot Institute has found that at least 10 per cent of women who have abortions suffer immediate complications. There are also long-term effects of abortion including breast cancer, depression, pelvic inflammatory disease, and infertility. The 1994 Canadian Report of the Committee on the Abortion Law found that women who have abortions visit their family doctors 80 per cent more often than women in general, confirming U.S. studies finding women who have abortions suffer from overall poorer health afterward.

Golob said, “Ontario taxpayers are likely on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars for abortion and its aftermath.”

CLC national president Jim Hughes said with looming deficits in the billions of dollars, saving tens of millions by “cutting spending on medically unnecessary procedure is a no-brainer.” He said that defunding abortion “is the right thing fiscally, right thing morally, and the right thing politically.” He points to the 2011 Abacus Data poll co-sponsored by The Interim, CLC, and LifeSiteNews showing that 61 per cent of Ontarians oppose the status quo of subsidizing all abortion, with 40 per cent wanting it covered only in cases of emergencies and 11 per cent supporting access to abortion but not funding it. Another 10 per cent did not think abortion should be available at all. On the other hand, 30 per cent support the status quo of taxpayer funding of all abortions.

CLC Youth’s campaign to get abortion defunded has included the 2011 Queen’s Park Rally, pamphleting more than a third of Ontario’s ridings, a petition campaign that garnered more than 20,000 signatures, mini rallies at more than 40 constituency offices, and now the second rally at Queen’s Park. Golob said, “people of all ages have gotten involved,” as seniors, youth, and middle-aged alike, “agree that they don’t want money taken out of their pockets to pay for abortion.”

Golob told, “the upcoming Defund Abortion Rally will send a message to the new premier of Ontario, Kathleen Wynne, and the rest of the legislative body that that this is an issue that Ontarians care about, and that we will not back down until this medically unnecessary procedure is defunded for good.”

The defund rally will convene from 12 noon to 2 pm in front of the provincial legislature on a weekday, Tuesday, March 19, one month after Queen’s Park opens for business following a four-month prorogation.

The rally will take place weeks before the province issues its budget. Golob noted that Kathleen Wynne, the new Liberal premier selected by the Liberal Party of Ontario convention in January, says on her website that she wants to guarantee “the economic security and fairness for all Ontarians.” Golob said, “if Ms. Wynne keeps her word, then defunding abortion should be a priority for her government since it would achieve both of these goals. Thirty to fifty million dollars a year are spent in Ontario on taxpayer funded abortions, which the majority of Ontarians are not happy with.”

According to CLC Youth literature, $30 million could pay to hire 200 more doctors, 400 nurses, or purchase 20 MRI machines, instead of paying for at least 30,000 abortions.

Golob said, “Campaign Life Coalition Youth holds the position that government-funded abortions are a blatant abuse of tax dollars, are severely unjust, and that these funds can and must be directed away from the killing of our preborn children.”