Bob Rae, (MPP, York South-Weston), while still federal MP for Broadview-Greenwood, circulates a personal statement on abortion which contains the following sentences: “I do not support abortion on demand. Neither does the NDP…I think the question as to whether a woman should have an abortion is essentially a matter of conscience between the woman and her doctor.” (NDP Circular on file)
Former NDP MPP for Parkdale, Dr. Jan Dukzsta, having lost the election, attacked Positive Parents (anti-homosexual) and Campaign Life (pro-life) as groups which “are dangerous. It is the start of fascism…are we going to go through another McCarthy period…?”
Marion Bryden, NDP MPP Beacher-Woodbine and other NDP candidates object to Campaign Life’s attempt to educate voters on the pro-life issue because, she says, single-issue campaigns can hurt parties representing a wide range of policies.
The report of the Joint Caucus-Party Committee on Abortion on the Ontario NDP recommends that:
– abortion be removed from the Criminal Code;
– that contraceptives be better researched and made freely available to all;
– the licensed abortion clinics be established, fully funded by OHIP.
At the Hamilton provincial NDP convention, the debate on the issues of free contraceptives, birth control counseling, abortion services and support for Henry Morgentaler was a heated one, according to Globe and Mail reporter Udy Steed. However, the women’s committee of the Ontario NDP “achieved a major victory winning party approval for independent abortion clinics,” she wrote.
Ms. Steed also observed that “earlier, Kay McPherson, a longtime activist for women’s rights, said at a women’s caucus meeting that the NDP executive had agreed to allow an anti-abortion group of delegates to set up a talk at the convention, but that the provincial council had overruled that decision on the grounds that the group was acting against official party policy.”
On the day of Morgentaler’s acquittal, NDP leader Bob Rae charges in the Ontario Legislature that the province must stop “sticking its head in the sand” and accept that there is a need for independent abortion clinics to “ensure access to a service which many women obvious feel they have a right to.”
“We cannot,” he said, “have the Minister of Health or the Attorney General acting as a kind of moral censor on what juries have found to essentially be private and moral decisions.”
After Attorney General McMurtry announces in the Ontario Legislature that the Ontario Government intends to appeal the Morgentaler acquittal, Bob Rae, “angrily denounced it.”
The Justice Committee of the Ontario Legislature accepted a resolution by MPP Evelyn Gigantes to include so-called discrimination against “sexual orientation” under the Ontario Human Rights Act. This act provides special rights for homosexuals and could be interpreted to include homosexual “marriages” and adoption.
The Ontario NDP members of the provincial parliament voted in a block for homosexual special rights. Three members abstained. 19 voted for the bill.