TORONTO, ON April 18, 2012 – The Catholic Civil Rights League today commented on new reports that the selective abortion of females is happening in Canada among ethnic groups where boys are preferred.

An editorial in the Journal of the Canadian Medical Association in February recommended withholding the gender of the unborn child from parents in an effort to curtail the practice; a study reported this week by the same journal finds evidence that Indian-born mothers living in Canada are more likely to have male children at their second or later births, than what is average for all births. For example, for third births, the male to female ratio in the study group was 1.36 (136 boys for every 100 girls), compared to the 1.05 normally found for all births.

“The willingness to use abortion in order to exercise a cultural preference for boys should not be surprising in Canada, where there are no legal limitations on abortion and multiculturalism is respected,” said Joanne McGarry, League executive director. “The possibilities for addressing sex selection by restricting the use of ultrasound are really rather limited – and for some, probably hard to justify – when no reason for any abortion needs to be given under the law.”

While extreme, sex selection abortions really underline the need for education and a new law, which together are the only things that could really help restore respect for all life. The debate on MP Stephen Woordworth’s parliamentary motion to study a change in the law defining when legal personhood begins, scheduled for April 26, and the national March for Life May 10, which the League supports, are both events that will help focus attention on the need for a new law.