HALIFAX – Pro-choice supporters in Halifax rallied downtown on Thursday morning to voice their opposition to pro-life supporters who held rallies across the city this week.
The rally was organized in part as a response to the graphic nature of the photos used in the pro-life protests.
“Every single time something like this happens, we rally the troops and get stronger and stronger,” said Alison Sparling, one of the organizers of Thursday’s rally.
“We’re standing in front of the hospital because we do expect some anti-choice people to be here, and as they’re going to try to shame people we want them to know that they are safe, we’re not judging them, and they are doing things that are routine and normal and completely OK.”
Sparling said she was expecting about 80 pro-choice supporters to show up at the rally.
The graphic images used by pro-life group Show the Truth Canada made the debate between the two sides even more tense.
Global News did not publish pictures of the posters, but Show the Truth’s spokesperson Theresa Gainey said they use the graphic images to launch a conversation about abortion.
The pro-life protesters said the posters depicted images of aborted fetuses.
Police said they received a number of complaints about the posters from the public, but that the posters are legal and protected under Canada’s freedom of expression laws.
Some cities have bylaws in place restricting the use of certain images in protests.
Jennifer Stairs, a city spokesperson, said in an email that Halifax is not actively considering any such ban.