23 May 2014 Former PEI Chief Justice weighs in on abortion debate
In the past few weeks Canadians from all sides of the political spectrum having entered the national debate on abortion and the rights of children prior to birth. Now we have a former judge offering his thoughts on the matter as well.
Gerard Mitchell of Charlottetown, PEI, is a former provincial court judge (1975-77), P.E.I. Supreme Court Justice (1981-1987) and Chief Justice from 1987 until 2008. He wrote this piece for The Guardian today where he refers to the Supreme Court of Canada decision in R. v. Morgentaler, by saying:
None of the seven judges held that there was a constitutional right to abortion on demand. All of the judges acknowledged the state has a legitimate interest in protecting the unborn. Even Madam Justice Wilson, who rendered the most liberal opinion in favour of a woman’s rights, advocated an approach to abortion that would balance those rights with the state’s interest in protecting the unborn.
The more clarity and facts that form the foundation for the national conversation the better. Thank you Justice Mitchell!