Hundreds of pro-life Canadians gathered on Parliament Hill to take part in an in-person March For Life through the streets of downtown Ottawa on May 13. It was a return to Parliament Hill for the march, which was cancelled last year because of the COVID pandemic. Photo by Brian Dryden

Hundreds ignore restrictions to join March for Life

  • May 14, 2021

OTTAWA - The ongoing COVID pandemic could not silence Canada’s pro-life movement as hundreds marched through the streets of the nation’s capital May 13 while thousands more gathered online for the annual March for Life.

The march was back on Parliament Hill again after the actual in-person march was cancelled last year because of the COVID pandemic.

Despite Ontario’s continuing stay-at-home edict in place, Campaign Life Coalition, the march organizers, was adamant they would gather in-person on Parliament Hill again because, as one marcher told Canadian Catholic News, “the pro-life message is an essential service.”

Campaign Life Coalition Ottawa organizer Debbie Duval joined with other speakers in denouncing the fact that while most non-emergency medical procedures have been cancelled or delayed since governments brought in severe COVID pandemic regulations since March 2020 to stop the spread of the virus, abortions have been treated as an essential service.

“They have not stopped, so why would we,” Duval said. “Nothing is more essential than life.”

Signs that said “Abortion is not essential” were distributed by organizers but protesters such as Rapa Tola attended the event with their own poster versions of the same message. His read, “Abortion is not health care.”

“How can aborting children be considered essential,” said Tola, who lives in Ottawa.

“They are still killing babies. This (COVID) hasn’t stopped abortions,” Muriel Duclair, a Gatineau resident, said when asked why she attended this year’s march even though most of the 2021 events surrounding the March For Life were also being broadcast online.

“I feel it is important to do this in person if we can because it shows that we are not going to be silenced,” she said, as she held one of 300 roses organizers handed out at the event to symbolize the 300 babies that are aborted every day in Canada.

Speakers told the crowd to stand up for their principles as the “culture of death” continues to seep into the nation’s soul.

“Do not compromise. Never, ever, backdown from your principles, even if it feels like you are all alone,” Independent MP Derek Sloan told the crowd.

While one of the themes of this year’s March For Life was “you are not alone”, when it comes to political support for the pro-life movement during the rally on Parliament Hill pro-life Canadians were close to being alone.

Sloan was the only sitting MP who took part in the rally. The only other political figure to speak at the rally was Christian Heritage Party (CHP) leader Rod Taylor.

The march proceeded, with a City of Ottawa police escort, through the streets of downtown Ottawa.

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