Poll shows that majority of Canadians believe that provincial governments
should provide more information about options to abortion

ABBOTSFORD, BC, Jan. 18 /CNW/ - A new poll by Angus Reid Public Opinion reveals a desperate need for education about many important aspects of abortion in Canada, says Yvonne Douma, Executive Director of Signal Hill, a Canadian human rights organization dedicated to educating the public about vital life issues.

The Angus Reid survey of 1,002 adult Canadians found not only that a large majority of Canadians believe that provincial governments should provide more information about options to abortion, but also that most Canadians are misinformed about the legal status of abortion.

"These findings provide further evidence of a profound disconnect between what the public needs and wants, and what it actually receives," says Douma. "And while it's a shame that most Canadians do not realize that abortion is legal at all stages in this country - even while the majority believe some restrictions ought to be in place - it's also heartening that a large majority recognize the need for education about alternatives to abortion."

The poll found that four-in-five Canadians (80%) are unaware of the current legal status of abortion in the country: women being able to have an abortion at any time during their pregnancy, with no legal restrictions whatsoever. In fact, a significant proportion of respondents (43%) wrongly assume that an abortion can only be performed in the first trimester of pregnancy.

Douma says these findings underscore the importance of Signal Hill's ongoing work to deliver accurate and constructive information so that Canadians can make informed, healthy and life-valuing decisions. "We believe that all Canadians have a fundamental human right to be fully informed about all aspects of life-critical issues, including abortion," she explains. Four-in-five Canadians (79%) back an initiative that would make it mandatory for health care workers to offer information to pregnant women about alternatives to abortion. This initiative has the strong support of half of Canadian women across the country.

The poll also found that just one-in-four Canadian women (26%) endorse the current legal status, and two-thirds call for different approaches to regulate abortion in Canada.

"Women and families have a right to know all the options and support available to them when confronted with an unplanned pregnancy" Douma goes on to say. "Unfortunately, this is not happening today. It is Signal Hill's mandate to provide this information with clarity and support." For more information about the work of Signal Hill or to find out how you can donate, visit www.thesignalhill.com or contact Yvonne Douma at 1 877 7SIGNAL or email at info@thesignalhill.com.

Full results can be accessed at: http://www.visioncritical.com/wpcontent/uploads/2010/01/2010.01.15_Abortion_CAN.pdf

SOURCE THE SIGNAL HILL

For further information: For further information: about the work of Signal Hill or to find out how you can donate, visit www.thesignalhill.com or contact Yvonne Douma at 1-877-7SIGNAL or email at info@thesignalhill.com

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THE SIGNAL HILL

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