OTTAWA, ON November 22, 2013 – The Catholic Civil Rights League today commended the initiative of MP Stephen Woodworth in bringing forth a motion calling on the House of Commons to affirm that every Canadian law must be interpreted in a manner which recognizes the equal worth and dignity of everyone who is in fact a human being.

“We support the goal of legal recognition of unborn children as human beings, and we applaud the ongoing efforts and courage of pro-life MPs to extend basic civil rights to these most vulnerable of human beings,” said League Executive Director Joanne McGarry.

Citing the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights principle that “recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world…” Mr. Woodworth said: “Laws like subsection 223(1), which falsely condemn as non-human those we know to be human, are savage and inhumane, a throwback to a more barbarous age. (The law states that a child is a human being for legal purposes after it has completely exited the mother’s body in a living state.)

“No ideology, no political interest and no personal desire justifies such a law,” he said. Referring to growing up in the 1960’s, labelled the “Age of Aquarius,” Woodworth pointed out that it was “unimaginable” then that Parliament in the twenty-first century would shelter such a law.

Under Parliamentary rules Woodworth cannot, without consent, bring this Motion to a vote but he said he was proposing it to “draw a line in the sand.”

In the last parliamentary session, Mr. Woodworth proposed Motion 312, which called for a parliamentary committee study calling on scientific and medical evidence to review Canada’s law on when a child becomes a human being. It was defeated 203 to 91 in September 2012. Mr. Woodworth was guest speaker at the League’s 2013 annual dinner.

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 and has chapters across Canada. 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;