In many centers across Canada, Henry Morgentaler is attempting to establish abortion “clinics” through which he will be able to realize greater profits from the baby-killing industry. The following are reports of the battles which the pro-lifers are waging against him.
Halifax – On October 21, nine pro-life rescuers were arrested on mischief charges after a demonstration at Henry Morgentaler’s new abortuary in Halifax. Within hours of the arrests, Morgentaler’s lawyers said they will pursue an injunction to ban further pro-life witnessing at the clinic.
The witnesses blocked the driveway of the abortuary with cinder blocks. They were accompanied by a small group of supporters who did not take part in the rescue.
Anne Marie Tommlins, former vice-president of Campaign Life Coalition Nova Scotia, said of the picket “we wanted a small group…so it would be a peaceful and prayerful event.
Morgentaler’s abortuary has been legal in Nova Scotia since1990 when the courts struck down the province’s Medical Services Act..
Ottawa – On October 21, Ontario’s Minister of Health, Frances Lankin, promised to help Morgentaler establish his new abortuary in Ottawa. “I don’t think it will take two years to go through with this proposal” Lankin assured Morgentaler and his Ottawa pro-abortion demonstrators.
Saying that she will work with the District Health Council, Lankin contends that she may be able to speed things up for Mogentaler who proposed the abortuary sixteen months ago.
Also present on the other side of the street were pro-life witnesses, led by Sr. Lucille Derocher, head of Human Life International in Canada. The group of about 150 prayed for the conversion of Morgentaler and that he would “use his energies to do some good.”
Final approval for the abortuary must come from the province, under the jurisdiction of the Health Facilities Act and the District Health Council. Lankin may use her position to ask that the clinic be approved immediately.
Toronto – On November 9 pro-life witnesses turned out to picket the proposed site of Morgentaler’s new abortion clinic. The picket was called to warn neighbors and businesses that having an abortionist in their midst will not be good for morale and business.
To the surprise of many, the Sheriff of York (Toronto) turned up and enforced the injunction which prohibits demonstrations within 500 feet of Morgentaler’s premises, even though this proposed “clinic” is a long way from opening. When the Sheriff had finished reading the injunction, the pro-lifers dispersed and no arrests were made.
The picket left pro-lifers with two unanswered questions: who called the sheriff and does the injunction apply to a place where Morgentaler had not even set up business.
In the end it was generally conceded that local businessmen had called the sheriff, the same people who the protesters were trying to protect. After consultation with legal experts, it was decided that the wording of the injunction was indeed broad enough that it might apply to Morgentaler’s new place, even though it was not yet in operation.
An interesting follow-up to this picket occurred a week later when tenants of the building into which Morgentaler plans to move and the local Bayview Business Association met to draft a letter to the Ontario Heath Minister Frances Lankin. The letter urged Lankin “to co-operate with Dr. Morgentaler on locating a site that is not immediately adjacent to a family neighborhood.”
However, Layne Verbeek, a Health Ministry spokesman, has stated that because of the province’s Independent Health Facilities Act, “where Dr. Morgentaler locates is up to him.”
The locals have made it clear that they do not want him.