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Abortion conversation continues as thousands attend 22nd National March for Life

Pro-Life supporters marching to the steps of Parliament Hill were met by a pro-choice crowd, 50 years after abortion was decriminalized under Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau.
2019-05-09 Pro-Life Protest
Pro-life supporters gather on Wellington Street out front of Parliament Hill (photo/Jeff Slack)

Men and women of all ages, on the pro-life side of the abortion conversation, marched through the streets of downtown Ottawa and funnelled to the steps of Parliament Hill for The 22nd National March for Life.

Many held signs with written messages that said 'love life choose life' and 'remember the unborn,' Thursday afternoon.

There were a lot of youth at this year's event, brought in by busses from certain schools in the Ottawa region.

"We care because this is something that is corrupting politics," said Gabrielle Vandrgragt, 16. "If we could restore the sanctity of life, I feel like we could fix a lot of problems in our society."

Angelina Steemstra, National Coordinator with Silence No More Awareness campaign, shared her story about having PTSD after having an abortion at the age of 15.

"There were all these physiological and emotional things that were inside of me that I wouldn't know when they would get triggered," Seemstra said. "I got triggered this morning when I came on the hill because calming music was playing and it was the same as when I got my abortion."

Not all who showed up Thursday shared the pro-life message.

"I'm somebody from a young mother who wasn't financially able [to support a child], and I know that if people are stuck in that situation they need to have that [abortion] option," said pro-choice supporter Dawson Mihichuk. "We aren't going to stand idly by while people who have no idea what it means to be a woman are out here saying something that's inherently not true."

A fence and heavy police presence separated the two demonstrations. Some on both sides of the fences had peaceful conversations, while others mocked and chanted one another.

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