Award to pro-choice group delayed after anti-abortion protest

The presentation of an award meant to honour a pro-choice group over the weekend was postponed because the organizer was concerned about safety.

Award for P.E.I. Reproductive Rights Organization will be given, say Isleawards

The presentation of an award meant to honour a pro-choice group over the weekend was postponed because the organizer was concerned about safety.

Alex Maine said some of the email his group received after announcing the award for the P.E.I. Reproductive Rights Organization led to safety concerns. (CBC)

Alex Maine, project director for the Isleawards, told CBC News he received 30 to 40 emails and calls protesting his group's decision to honour the P.E.I. Reproductive Rights Organization.

"I would say that they had threatening attitude, but not directly threatening," said Maine. 

"The kinds of emails I was getting was things like you're killing babies, you're going to destroy the next generation of P.E.I. … I will point out that it is the minority who took it to the extremes. Most people just politely called me and told me that they had an issue."

Maine said some of the wording raised alarm bells for his group, and they need to think of everybody's safety.

Maine would not send any of the emails to CBC News, but he quoted one as saying, "This award must not and will not happen."

The Isleawards are meant to recognize Islanders having an impact in their community.

The P.E.I. Right to Life Association issued a press release late last week criticizing the decision to give an award to the pro-choice group. President Holly Pierlot said her association encouraged people to contact Alex Maine but the goal was not to intimidate.

P.E.I. Right to Life president Holly Pierlot says her group does not support violence or threats of violence. (CBC)

"The use of violence or the threat of violence would be so against right to life's principles, as it seeks to protect the dignity of human life," said Pierlot.

"We certainly would not support that."

After speaking with CBC News, Pierlot posted a note on P.E.I. Right to Life's Facebook page urging anyone who may have tried to insult or intimidate Alex Maine to apologize.

Maine said the P.E.I. Reproductive Rights Organization will receive an award, but he is not sure yet how or when.

For mobile device users:Should the Isleaward have been given to the P.E.I. Reproductive Rights Organization last weekend?

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