Abortion In Canada

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The laws against abortions and contraceptives in Canada were very strict and remained

unchanged until the arrival of Bill C-50. According to Stettner and Hay contraceptives became

legal and abortion was legalized but only “if it was performed in an accredited hospital by a

licensed physician after being approved by a Therapeutic Abortion Committee (TAC) comprised

of at least three doctors who had determined that the pregnancy endangered either the life or the

health of the pregnant woman” . Many women believed that these new laws were not put in

place to make abortion more accessible to them, but rather they were implemented to clarify

when physicians could legally perform them, so they could avoid being imprisoned. Evidently,
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I had a feeling I was fighting for fundamen¬tal justice.” He worked in

medicine from 1953 to 1969 when he quit to dedicate his entire time towards providing safe

abortions to women in a private clinic also in Montreal . That decision was influenced by the

reception of his speech as a member of the Humanist Association of Canada in front of the

committee on Health and welfare on October 19, 1967. After that speech he was flooded with

requests from women who sought abortions. As a result, he was arrested three times from 1973

to 1976 by the Montreal police, but he was acquitted each time which did not discourage him

from continuing. As previously, mentioned Dr. Morgentaler along with Dr. Robert Scott, and Dr.

Leslie Frank Smoling opened an abortion clinic in Toronto. They were soon arrested by the

police and their case went to the supreme court.

That supreme court case was the ground-breaking case of 1988 referred to as

R.v Morgentaler which put an end to laws that were regulating abortions. An analysis of
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Essentially, they concluded that it was unconstitutional,

because it contained many potential barriers. They were also passionately against forcing

a women to carry a foetus to term unless she met certain criteria . For J Beetz and J Estey the

requirements of 251 were unfair because “therapeutic abortions which they perform and the

committee requirement itself each create delays for pregnant women who seek timely and

effective medical treatment” .Also because of the inaccessibility of the treatment which was

caused by the refusal of certain hospital boards to appoint therapeutic abortion committees which

would qualify under the criminal code . Justice Wilson was the only one to recognize that

abortion was a constitutional right. In her opinion “section 251 takes a personal and private

decision away from the woman and gives it to a committee which bases its decision on