The battle for Ontario doctors’ freedom of conscience rights

    The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) has drafted a policy mandating that physicians must make referrals for procedures and “treatment” even if it is against their conscience. This is surprising since the CPSO had previously attempted bringing such demands into policy in 2008. At the time, the policy was not enacted because of advocacy efforts from physicians and the public. As well, the College conducted a poll that resulted in strong opposition. Twenty-five thousand people voted against the violation of physicians’ conscience rights versus eight thousand in support of the motion.

    If enacted, this policy will affect the general public as well as physicians and other healthcare professionals. Physicians who do not participate or refer for abortifacients or abortion will be convicted of professional misconduct. Patients of various religious faiths may have difficulty finding medical care that addresses their needs. This policy paves the way for legalized euthanasia as physicians will be required to participate or refer.

    Your help is needed. Please voice your strong objection to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. This is of great importance as the College has invited open consultation of the policy. The deadline is 20 February 2015. Please invite everyone you know to do the same.

    The initial poll during the summer of 2014 was as follows: 1,500 against the policy; 4,500 in support of the policy.

    This is the link to the policy consult page.

    This is the Professional Obligations and Human Rights policy.

    Go here to join the Discussion forum.

    Send an email to the following address:

    Or by regular mail:

    College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario
    80 College Street
    Toronto, ON  M5G 2E2
    Fax: 416-961-3330

    Photo source: MorgueFile free photo.