Toronto, ON December 7, 2018 – The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) responded today to the revised Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) application process, as announced by federal Labour minister Patty Hajdu.

In brief, the new application process remains sadly deficient.

The government has moved from an attestation requirement, or forced speech, by having to check a box in support of its views on “reproductive health”, which included unfettered access to abortion at all stages or its views on gender ideology, to a new requirement. It now seeks applicants to confirm that it will not engage in certain “proposed activities” in respect of otherwise legitimate beliefs with which the current government disagrees.

The Minister’s new demands continue a suppression of viewpoints not shared by the government, for which funding will continue to be denied to groups that disagree.

The federal Liberals are effectively establishing a “bubble zone” to prevent funding to organizations who do not share its unfettered pro-abortion position.

The government maintains a false impression that there is a “right to safe and legal abortion”. It does not exist as part of either the Charter of Rights and Freedoms or in case law.

While Labour minister Patty Hajdu proposed to accommodate faith-based groups, that accommodation effectively shuts out their core positions as unacceptable.

This is no victory for the unborn. The government has simply changed the eligibility criteria so that organizations will be denied funding if they stand for prolife positions.

The new wording of the 2019 application makes clear that grants will not be allocated if used to “undermine or restrict the exercise of rights legally protected in Canada.”

Yet, peaceful protest and assembly is a right legally protected in Canada, whereas unfettered abortion is not, no matter how many times this government attempts to affirm otherwise.

In terms of activities forbidden by organizations receiving grants, restrictions include “ineligible projects and jobs activities”, those that “actively work to undermine or restrict a woman’s access to sexual and reproductive health services.”

Think of an organization that wishes to promote the latest research on post – abortion effects, research not typically afforded women prior to the procedure itself. Such an organization will likely be denied funding, even though it is engaged in assisting women’s reproductive health, because it treads into a challenge to the unfettered abortion licence, at any and all stages of a pregnancy, promoted by this government.

There is no victory here for groups like the CCRL, previously rejected by the CSJ program.

From the onset the CCRL spoke out against the Trudeau government’s use of the Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program as a means of compelling ideological conformity from law abiding charities and non-profits through the attestation requirement. The document was explicit: included under “reproductive rights” was “the right to access safe and legal abortions.”

The League instead called for dissent and circulated a petition, which is still circulating from coast to coast.

The CCRL will continue to fight the Trudeau government’s “abortion absolutism”.

About the CCRL

Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) ( assists in creating conditions within which Catholic teachings can be better understood, cooperates with other organizations in defending civil rights in Canada, and opposes defamation and discrimination against Catholics on the basis of their beliefs. The CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization with a large nationwide membership base. The CCRL is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members.

To donate to the CCRL, please click here.

For further information:

Christian Domenic Elia, PhD
CCRL Executive Director