Sex Selective Abortion Act remains intact despite parliamentary shutdown

For Immediate Release

OTTAWA, ON— Cathay Wagantall, Member of Parliament for Yorkton—Melville, today reassured her constituents and all Canadians that her Private Member’s Bill, C-233: the Sex Selective Abortion Act, remains intact despite Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s decision to prorogue parliament.

“By proroguing parliament, the Prime Minister has suspended our parliamentary duties and our efforts to investigate his corruption,” said Wagantall. “While prorogation means that government bills ‘die’ before they can be passed, parliamentary rules ensure that Private Members’ Bills, including the Sex Selective Abortion Act, are preserved for when the House of Commons returns.”

MP Wagantall introduced the Sex Selective Abortion Act on February 26th and has been awaiting the first round of debate on the bill. If passed, C-233 would amend the Criminal Code to prohibit a medical professional from performing an abortion if the reason is the sex of the pre-born child.

Justin Trudeau prorogued Parliament on August 18th, shutting down parliamentary investigations into the ‘WE’ Scandal and setting the stage for a Speech from the Throne on September 23rd. Private Members’ Business is also suspended until that date.

However, Tuesday’s prorogation merely extends a five-month hiatus on Private Members’ Business. By shuttering the House of Commons in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Liberals suspended all work on Private Members’ Bills.

“Parliament has been ‘artificially’ prorogued for almost half a year,” added Wagantall. “Our ability to hold the Liberals accountable in the House and at Committee has been curtailed. We have also been unable to address the issue of sex-selective abortion in Canada. Eighty-four percent of Canadians would like this form of sex-based discrimination to be illegal.”

In the event of a dissolution of parliament and an election, every bill before the House of Commons would be terminated, including C-233.

“It will be a decision for the next leader of the Conservative Party as to whether we will attempt to trigger an election,” said Wagantall. “Until then, I will remain focused on defending pre-born girls and equality between the sexes.”

Wagantall said she is humbled by the support her bill has received from across the country and across the political spectrum. “Five thousand Canadians have already signed a petition in support of C-233,” she said. “Please continue to share the petition available at cathaywagantall.ca/c233. Sex-selective abortion is wrong and should have no place in our country.”

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For more information, please contact:

Office of Cathay Wagantall, MP
cathay.wagantall.a2@parl.gc.ca
(613) 992-4395