TORONTO, Ont., Aug. 4, 2005 – the Catholic Civil Rights League ( today expressed disappointment that Henry Morgentaler is being given the 2005 Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership for his abortion advocacy. He will receive the award Friday at the 74th annual Couchiching Conference in Orillia. The award is given annually to a Canadian who demonstrates leadership in an area of public policy.

“Through the direct and measurable impact that Dr. Morgentaler has had on public policy, he exemplifies the high level of leadership required of award recipients,” the Couchiching Institute on Public Affairs said in a news release.

Phil Horgan, President of the CCRL, said Morgentaler’s views on population control should be rejected, not honoured, by any respected body such as the Institute. “No one doubts the impact Morgentaler has had on abortion policy in Canada, but many of us believe this impact has been profoundly negative. In fact, the vast majority of Canadians do not support the unrestricted, state-funded abortion-on-demand that he has championed. And in recent years he has moved beyond abortion rights’ rhetoric into eugenics’ territory through his claims that abortion has helped reduce the nation’s crime rate by reducing the number of unwanted children. No organization should want to be associated with theories such as these. ”

CCRL spearheaded a protest earlier this year when the University of Western Ontario announced its decision to grant an honorary degree to Morgentaler. The League urged alumni to withdraw their financial support of the university, and many did so.

About CCRL
Catholic Civil Rights League ( 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. CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization. The Catholic Civil Rights League is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members.
For further information: Joanne McGarry, Executive Director, 416-466-8244;