N.B. abortion access prompts St. John's demonstration
Advocates on both sides of the abortion debate faced off outside a clinic in St. John's on Tuesday, although their focus was on abortion services in New Brunswick.
About 20 people with a group called Voices For Choice N.L. rallied outside the Athena Health Centre on LeMarchant Road to protest the imminent closure of the Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton.
Organizer Renee Dumaresque said the rally was about the principle of access, regardless of where people live.
"Even though we do have a clinic in the province, if you're living across the island [like] somewhere in St. Anthony or somewhere that's far away, you have to travel all the way to St. John's in order to get that service," she said.
"So even though there's a right, sometimes it's not an option for people if they're faced with barriers such as financial things or transportation or privacy concerns."
Several people opposed to abortion also protested on the sidewalk next to the clinic.
"We don't look upon it as a counter-protest because we do, for the most part, we're here every week doing prayer vigils, and standing up with our pro-life message," said participant Collette Fleming.
"So it just so happens today that the opposition are here when we're here doing our prayer vigil. And I think it's wonderful."