Membership key to Nfld. RTL

ST.JOHN’S, Nfld. – The new head of Newfoundland Right to Life lists increased membership as a top priority for 1997.  Lorraine Cole recently took over as head of the provincial pro-life organization from Philomena Rogers.  She plans to liaise with a number of church and community groups in an effort to build a stronger base for Newfoundland Right to Life.  Among the groups targeted are the Knights of Columbus, the Catholic Women’s League and the local Pentecostal church assemblies.  Cole also hopes to emphasize increased youth participation as a major objective for 1997.

Wrongful birth suit implications

OTTAWA – Pro-life groups will monitor the aftermath of a $3 million “wrongful birth” awarded to an Ottawa couple.  The couple files suit after their two songs, now aged seven and eight years, were discovered to suffer from a fatal form of muscular dystrophy.  The award comes after a jury found two doctors guilty of negligence for not doing enough to inform the parents of the risks to their two songs.  The parents say they would have aborted the children, or not conceived in the first place, if they had been fully apprised of the dangers.

Debate shows system’s flaws

MILTON, Ont. – The president of Renaissance Canada, a broad-based coalition of pro-life, pro-family supporters, said that the year-long struggle to remove controversial Foxfire book from the Halton district high schools shows the inadequacy of the present school board system.  In a recent letter to Ontario education minister John Snobelen, Rev. Ken Campbell said the Halton board has refused to address parents’ concerns regarding the Foxfire book.  “The board of education system has become an anachronism, a bureaucratic-run, publicly-funded monopoly, unaccountable to anyone but the bureaucrats who run it,” Rev. Campbell said. He offered four recommendations, including the abolition of all school boards, and “back to basics” educational policies as part of a long-term solution.

Lampton RTL holds vigil

SARNIA, Ont. – The Lampton Right to Life group in southwestern Ontario scheduled a candlelight vigil January 25 at Sarnia General Hospital to draw attention to the problem of abortion in Canada.  The vigil also marked the ninth anniversary of the Supreme Court of Canada decision striking down crucial sections of the country’s abortion law.  The decision left unborn children in this country with less protection than ever.  Lampton Right to Life recently took part in a campaign to stop Halloween fundraising for UNICEF, because of that organization’s support of abortion and contraception in the Third World.  Pro-life opposition was vindicated recently when the Vatican suspended its annual contribution to UNICEF.

Pickup to address U.S. bishops

BEAUMONT, Alberta – Disabled rights activist Mark Pickup has been invited to address the U.S. National Conference of Catholic Bishops meeting in Washington in March.  Pickup, who suffers from progressive multiple sclerosis, has become a powerful voice in the anti-euthanasia debate.  He takes special exception to suicide doctor Jack Kevorkian and his followers who offer “death with dignity” as a convenient solution to the problem of suffering and terminal illness.  Pickup’s address will coincide with anticipated decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court on two lower court cases involving state’s authority to ban assisted suicide laws.

Abortionist named to committee

VANCOUVER – British Columbia’s pro-life community is concerned over the appointment of abortionist Dr. Garson Romalis to a committee overseeing selection of provincial judges, justices of the peace and traffic court adjudicators.  Romalis was wounded by an unknown assailant in 1995, and immediately blamed the entire pro-life movement for the shooting.  B.C. pro-lifers say that the Romalis appointment is another attempt by the provincial NDP government to bolster its controversial “bubble zone” legislation restriction pro-life activity near abortuaries.  They also wonder about the impartiality of Romalis-appointees when deciding matters involving known pro-life supporters.

Gays could win federal funding

VANCOUVER – Canada’s Secretary of State for Multiculturalism is considering a plan to allow homosexual groups the right to apply for multiculturalism funding.  Hedy Fry, who represents a riding in central Vancouver, recently told the magazine Xtra West that Ottawa’s multiculturalism programs should include all differences cited by the Canadian Human Rights Act, including sexual orientation.  Critics of the move said giving homosexual groups access to federal funding under the multiculturalism banner would lead to employment equity programs forcing employers to hire a quota of gay employees.