** The second
hour of debate on M312 is scheduled for Sept 21
(1:30pm EDT), and the vote for Sept 26 (5pm EDT)**
dangerous anti-abortion motion was debated in Parliament in
April and is coming up for a second round of debate on Sept
21 and a vote on Sept 26. Motion 312 (see full
Conservative MP Stephen Woodworth's website) calls for a
Parliamentary Committee to examine whether the Criminal Code
definition of "human being" should be expanded to include
fetuses. This threatens to give legal personhood to fetuses
and allow the re-criminalization of abortion, as well as
deny the constitutional rights of all pregnant women.
Although the motion is not expected to pass, we must send a strong message to Parliament and anti-choice MPs that we will never let anyone take us back to the 1950’s on hard-fought reproductive rights for Canadian women. Please take action today to ensure a crushing defeat for Motion 312 in June.
Priority Action: Paper
petition - Please print copies (legal
size 11x14, or shrink to letter size 8-1/2 x 11) and gather
handwritten signatures, then return to Niki Ashton, Member of
Parliament, House of Commons, Ottawa ON K1A 0A6 (not to
ARCC). These will be
officially tabled in Parliament. (Click
here to understand the difference between our
online and paper petitions and how ARCC will use each.)
Priority Action: Sample
letter for anti-choice MPs - Please send this letter
(or write your own) to any or all anti-choice MPs and
those with an unknown stance, urging them to vote No on
March 2012 - Online Petition Opposing Motion 312 - Please sign our Internet petition against Motion 312.
September 24, 2012 - Notable
Canadian Women Oppose Motion 312. Fifty-nine women leaders, authors,
entertainers, politicians, union leaders, and others have
signed this letter opposing Motion 312. The signatories
ask that women MPs stand up for women’s rights and vote
against the motion.
September 16, 2012 - Dealing the Death Blow to the “Justice Bertha Wilson Wanted to Restrict Abortion” Argument - Anti-choicers’ Bertha Wilson argument is "A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury. Signifying nothing."
September 7, 2012 - Anti-choice failures are no reason to give them an inch. By Joyce Arthur (published on www.rabble.ca). The Canadian women's movement can't afford to look the other way. We must fight right-wing attempts to erase women's gains, such as Motion 312, even if those attempts have little chance of success.
March 2012 - Counter Arguments Against Motion 312 - Conservative MP Stephen Woodworth's motion to try and change the Criminal Code definition of human beings to include fetuses is doomed to failure because it negates women's rights.
April 2012 -
sheet on Motion 312 (pdf). Please email, or
print and distribute.
May 2012 - Hey
Parliament, Keep Your Laws Off my Body - Why
are we debating women's rights in the 21st century?
(and how motion 312 came up for debate
in the first place).
April 2012 - Motion 312: An
ignorant affront to global human rights standards -
A new international report on women's rights versus
fetal rights has arrived just in time to help demolish
April 2012 - Written Debate on Motion 312 between Joyce Arthur (Executive Director of ARCC) and Conservative Member of Parliament Stephen Woodworth.
on April 26, 2012:
March 2012 -
Wacky and Wonderful
Titles for Motion 312 - We've received dozens of
delightful suggestions from you to name Motion 312. Check
out the entire crazy list right here, let us know your
faves, and please suggest more! We'll use some of the best
ones in our documents and correspondence about the motion.
Ongoing news on the motion - Please join ARCC's Facebook page for the latest updates on the motion (as well as other reproductive rights news in Canada).
January 30, 2012 - Woodworth Poses Risk to Women's Health and Lives - Like the rest of the anti-abortion movement, Woodworth shows no recognition whatsoever of the human rights of women, or how giving rights to fetuses would harm pregnant women.
éclair pour dénoncer l’absurdité de la Motion Woodworth
(M312). Où : Parvis du Palais de
justice à Montréal, 1 Rue Notre-Dame Est. Quand : vendredi
21 septembre de 10h15 à 10h45. Afin de
souligner le caractère farfelu de l’idée de donner un statut
juridique au fœtus, la Fédération des femmes du Québec et la
Fédération du Québec pour le planning des naissances a
préparé une comédie des erreurs. Mise en scène : femme
enceinte, avocat, médecin, représentante de la compagnie
d’assurance et policière. Si vous être intéressée pour être
actrice écrivez à firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ottawa: Debate Viewing Party, hosted by Radical Handmaids. Friday, Sept. 21, 1pm EDT (debate starts at 1:30). CUPW Boardroom, 377 Bank street, 1st floor. "Want to see the debate on M-312 but just can't handle doing it alone? We got you covered. Join us for a debate viewing party. We'll have copies of our drinking game & some Kool-Aid. Together, we can get through this. Not in Ottawa? Host your own viewing party! Download our drinking game, throw on some red and send us photos!"
Vancouver: Stand Up for women's Right to Choose - Rally to Oppose motion 312. Tuesday, September 25, 10 to 10:30am. Vancouver Art Gallery (south side at Robson Street). This is a joint event of The BC Federation of Labour and the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada. Bring signs if you can, and wear red or a Handmaid's costume. Here's a poster (PDF) you can download, print and distribute.
Everywhere: Radical Handmaid's Drinking Game. When: Sept 26, 5pm EDT. Where: In front of a TV tuned to CPAC.
Facebook Pages to Join:
Motion 312: Official Facebook page.
page): The Radical Handmaids are pro-choice activists who
are fans of CanLit and really fabulous hats. Please 'Like'
them to join them!
If you're not on
Facebook, check out the Radical
Swarm Parliament - This Facebook page is a call
to arms for proud vagina owners and allies who believe in a
woman's right to choose. Knit, sew, crochet uteruses (uteri)
and vulvas to send to anti-choice members of Parliament (so
they can have one of their own and won't mess with yours!)
or to Ottawa for use in the Radical Handmaids action. (Note: the FB group is closed
but you can request to join. Patterns are available there,
or from this U.S. website. Another womb
Note: If you're in Vancouver, please show off your lovely knitting at the Sept 25 rally at the VAG!
(Facebook and Twitter campaign): "Anti-choice MPs in the House
of Commons have re-opened the abortion debate. We're
responding with this meme and will
#TellAntiChoiceMPsEverything about our reproductive and
vaginal health here and on Twitter. Supportive brothers are
the Word: If you'd like
to encourage others to take action against M-312, here's
some text you can copy and paste into an email, tweet, or
Facebook post. Please inform your friends and colleagues, and
ask local progressive groups to spread the word to their
membership and networks. Thank you!
you know of an action or if you are planning one, please let us know so we can
post it here. Thank you!
April 25, 2012 - Thousands Join Forces to Defeat Anti-Abortion Motion 312: A groundswell of opposition is building across Canada to a private member’s Motion 312 that would endanger abortion rights and the human rights of all pregnant women by attempting to establish legal personhood for fetuses.
Thank you for your support!
This anti-choice website
reveals the planned agenda of Canada's anti-choice movement
for this motion: They want to bring forward the biology of
fetal development as "scientific evidence" that zygotes,
embryos and fetuses are human beings from conception and
deserve legal protection (they've also been talking about
ultrasound and sex
However, this would subordinate women to their fetuses and
eliminate many rights and legal protections for pregnant