The city’s governance and priorities committee unanimously refused the appeal by the pro-life group on the grounds that Alliance for Life Saskatoon is not a registered charity or non-profit group. The decision to deny the request was made by city clerk Joanne Sproule in December.
The group was asking the week of Jan 21 – 28, 2020, to be proclaimed “Respect for Life Week” to “promote the beauty and value of human life and respect for each individual’s right to life,” according to the group’s request.
Ward 5 Coun. Randy Donauer said he was voting against the group’s appeal because they weren’t a charity or non-profit group. He also asked city administration to make the requirements more clear during the application process.
In October, the city changed the guidelines regarding flag raising and proclamations, which include preventing causes that are controversial, political or religious from being endorsed.
The new policy leaves the decision about what flags should be flown and which proclamations should be made to the city clerk instead of city council.
The new policy came after Alliance for Life Saskatoon requested a week dedicated to “respecting life” in 2018.
Tokaruk said she wasn’t “totally” surprised by the latest decision.
She also said she didn’t believe it was any more controversial “than certain other people that they allow flags.”
She said the group would apply again in the future and would consider seeking non-profit status but not charitable status, which she said they lost “about 20 years ago.”