NDP Critic for Women and Gender Equality, Leah Gazan, issued the following statement:
“Today, we commemorate International Safe Abortion Day to honour the trailblazers who fought for the right to access safe and legal abortions and reproductive health care services.
Allowing or denying access to women’s health services must never be used to score political points. Women across this country deserve to know that their government is doing everything possible to protect their rights and their health.
Unfortunately, under the Liberal government, access to reproductive health care, including safe abortion services, continues to be an issue across Canada. This is particularly true for women and gender diverse people residing in rural and remote communities who are forced to drive hundreds of kilometres to access this right.
The only abortion clinic in New Brunswick has had to reduce their services and hours of operation because of a lack of funding. This is a serious violation of women’s and gender diverse people’s rights. The federal government must use all the tools at its disposal to ensure women can access these health care services no matter what province or territory they live in. This includes immediately enforcing the Canada Health Act in cases where provinces fail to uphold these rights.
It’s time for the Liberal government to keep their promises to Canadian women. They must immediately end the charitable tax status for crisis pregnancy centres that do not support reproductive rights and provide inaccurate information about abortion or pregnancy options. The Prime Minister made this commitment in the Minister of Finance’s mandate letter but, so far, action has not been taken.
Today, on International Safe Abortion Day, New Democrats affirm our calls on the Liberal government to live up to their word, enforce the Canada Health Act, and ensure that people across Canada are able to access their right to reproductive health services and safe abortion services.”