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@FemmeCabal

Femme Cabal is based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Copyright 2018.
Images by Gladston Pereira.

This is a sample letter that you can include to one of the MLAs on the committee as well as the MLA who represents you. An original letter can be more effective than a form letter so please add your own words and experiences! Find your MLA here.

The Honourable (first name) (last name)

MLA (riding)

 

Dear Mr./Ms. (last name)

Re: Bill 207 Conscience Rights (Health Care Providers) Protection Act

I am writing this letter as a concerned Albertan. I would like to express my extreme opposition to the recently tabled legislation, Bill 207.

Bill 207, despite the name, is not about protection. It seeks to fundamentally change the obligations of a wide array of health care providers, it places women and other disadvantaged groups at risk in ways that contravene our section 7 Charter rights, which guarantee life, liberty, and security of the person. 

My concerns are that the bill could allow health care workers to abandon and harm patients with impunity particularly patients who are women, trans, or in need of medical assistance in dying.

The Bill allows for discrimination in contravention of our equality rights guaranteed by section 15 of the Charter. It does this using the ill-defined term “conscientious belief”, which it purports to mirror section 2 of the Charter, although its definition is not consistent with the democratic principles that permeate our Constitution and human rights codes across the country. 

In doing so, it changes sections of the Alberta Human Rights Codes to allow health care service providers to do so with impunity and without any recourse by patients. 

This will have profound effect on people seeking abortions, with disproportionate impact on those in rural areas, where access is already highly problematic.  But, the bill is more widespread and harmful as it contemplates an extremely broad definition of health care provider, including everything from physicians to hearing aid technicians. 

Nightmare scenarios could leave, for example, trans women in medical distress without recourse if denied services by emergency responders.

(IF RELEVANT) Thank you for your commitment in the past to equality.

Will you now work towards ensuring equitable access to healthcare for every Albertan, regardless of gender identity? Please vote No on Bill 207.

Sincerely,

(Your name)