This is a very newsworthy subject, that I suspect few journalists will pick up on (with some exceptions). Never-the-less, it deserves all the attention in the world.
Blogger Patricia Maloney filed a freedom of information request about abortion statistics in the Province of Ontario and received the following response:
Please be advised that effective January 1, 2012, section 65 of the Act (Application of the Act) was amended to exclude records relating to the provision of abortion services. The effect of section 65 (5.7) of the Act is that individuals no longer have a right to make access requests under Part II of FIPPA to an institution for records in the custody or under the control of that institution relating to the provision of abortion services.
“Individuals no longer have a RIGHT to make access requests … relating to the provision of abortion services.”
This is a government agency talking about a tax funded (to the tune of $70 million a year) procedure and ‘they’ (apparently “Mr. Don Young, Assistant Deputy Minister, was responsible for this decision...”) refuse to release any information to the public. As Patricia points out in her blog post, where was the public discussion about this decision? There was no debate at Queen’s Park, no committee struck to assess how tax dollars are going to be tracked for a procedure that will now be done in total secrecy.
This hiding of facts is truly “Orwellian.” I kind of liked this definition from Wikipedia:
“Orwellian” describes the situation, idea, or societal condition that George Orwell identified as being destructive to the welfare of a free society. It connotes an attitude and a policy of control by propaganda, surveillance, misinformation, denial of truth, and manipulation of the past… practiced by modern repressive governments.
Yup, sounds about right.by