Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of January 22, 2007
Carleton pro-lifers can express views . . . for now
By DEBORAH GYAPONG
Canadian Catholic News
Carleton Lifeline, a pro-life group at Carleton University in Ottawa, has been granted club status, despite a controversial constitutional amendment banning "anti-choice" groups and actions that the Carleton University Student Union (CUSA) approved in December.
On Jan. 9, representatives from various school associations voted almost unanimously in support of Lifeline.
That means Lifeline is eligible for about $2,000 in funding from mandatory student dues, and can use public spaces controlled by CUSA for meetings.
But Lifeline president Sarah Ferguson said she is not sure when or how the CUSA amendment will be implemented.
"I'm not sure what we can do that we won't get in trouble for," she said. "It seems there is very little that we can do."
"I think we're going to meet and function as a club as we normally would. Hold a meeting or an event and see what happens from there."
"The second we do anything they do not like, they are going to thus remove our club status," said Lifeline treasurer Nicholas McLeod. "It's the proverbial gun to the head scenario."
McLeod said the CUSA executive has told him that they are only concerned about actions, not the club's existence.
However, he said the policy means that even the pro-life group's existence is a violation.
On Dec. 5, CUSA representatives passed the amendment that would refuse recognition and club status to any groups that promote limiting a woman's "right to choose" an abortion.
During the heated meeting, pro-life arguments, especially those advocating legal protection for the unborn, were likened to hate speech and one CUSA representative compared a fetus to a parasite.