The Practical Radical

Ideology Kills – Canada and Reproductive Health | May 5, 2010


On May 3rd, Senator Nancy Ruth informed that gathered CIDA representatives to “shut the f*&k up”* on the issue of supporting abortion as any part of its foreign-aid focus on maternal health.

Abortion is legal in Canada. This position is based on ideology.

The Population Council, one of the world’s most respected agencies researching reproductive health, came out with a special Mother’s Day edition of their Momentum newsletter.

Some stark stats from that newsletter:

  • 343,000 is the estimated number of women worldwide who died in 2008 from pregnancy related causes.
  • 1 in 6,000 is a woman’s lifetime risk of dying from pregnancy-related complications in North America.
  • 1 in 7 is a woman’s life time risk of dying from pregnancy-related complications in Niger.
  • 68,000 is the estimated number of women who die annually as a result of complications from unsafe abortions.
  • 50% is the decline of unsafe abortion related deaths six years after South Africa legalized abortion.

What the Population Council contends is that restrictive abortion laws  do not prevent women from obtaining abortion services, only from obtaining them safely.

For the Conservative government to call for the advancement of maternal health at the upcoming G8 summit, without addressing the issue of abortion, is, to capture the actions (if not the words) of Senator Ruth, flipping the bird to women world-wide.

Canada should build its foreign policy on science and our own laws, not on ideology.


She may look like your Grandmother, but she doesn’t
talk like her!

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