Canada’s Maritime provinces, famous for the warmth of their residents, have failed to roll out the welcome mat for Henry Morgentaler.
Following the Nova Scotia court decision, in which Judge Kennedy ruled on jurisdiction plus the constitutionality of provincial law, and failed to convict Morgentaler who had openly boasted that he had performed several abortions, Nova Scotians have mobilized to keep him out of their province.
Encouraged by Judge Kennedy’s questioning the correctness of his own ruling, the Nova Scotia Government, which boldly states that it provides adequate abortion facilities, has launched an appeal which should be heard in May of 1991.
In the meantime, Nova Scotians are peacefully picketing outside Morgentaler’s abortuary, in addition to lobbying their provincial MLAs.
St. John’s, Newfoundland, has proven to be equally disappointing to Morgentaler who, in a state of panic, has appealed to bishops, beseeching them to exert pressure upon priests not to use inflammatory language.
The outgoing mayor of St. John’s, John Murphy, attempted to strip Morgentaler of his permit to operate an abortuary on the grounds that City Council was misled when it was approached for a permit, together with a dispute over zoning laws.
However, the new mayor, Shannie Duff, is not sure that a court challenge will stand. Premier Clyde Wells stated that the province has no plans to launch a legal challenge.
Newfoundlanders themselves have shown their opposition to Morgentaler setting up an abortuary in their province by praying and picketing outside the building.
In the meantime, the Newfoundland Pro-life Association continues to offer an alternative to abortion operating, at a cost of almost $80,000 annually, Elizabeth House, which provides food and shelter, together with other needs, for mothers facing difficult pregnancies.
Morgentaler has contacted the Prince Edward Island Health Minister, Wayne Cheverie, offering to help set up an abortuary in Canada’s only abortion-free province.