October 28, 2020

To the Honourable Members of the London City Council:

I am writing to express my deep concern about a piece of literature that was inserted into my mail slot by members of the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform (CCBR), an Alberta-based Pro-Life group that is targeting London, Ontario. The piece of literature was shocking as it included several disturbingly bloody, graphic images of what they claim to be aborted fetuses. CCBR members pushed a copy of this abhorrent literature into my home without any kind of wrapper covering the graphic images and without any kind of warning about the potentially disturbing nature of this material.

I am very troubled that this sort of literature could be forced upon the citizens of London in a way that gives us no option but to be exposed to these awful images. The kind of graphic images included in CCBR’s literature are potentially damaging to the well-being of children, young people, and women who have experienced a pregnancy loss of any kind. While free speech is important in a democratic society, rigorous debate about public policy does not require exposing citizens to horrifically graphic images. Forcing such images into people’s homes without any warning or any choice is an abuse of the Canadian postal system.

Indeed, I cannot believe that the material forced into my home by the CCBR would successfully pass Canada Post’s Advertising Code of Standards for home delivery. Thus, by delivering this material to our homes personally, the members of this organization are circumventing the regulations that were codified to uphold community standards by preventing the delivery of such graphic, disturbing images. Free speech could be preserved if the material were delivered in an envelope that identified the name and address of the sender and cautioned that the enclosures include graphic images that are potentially disturbing.

As a member of London City Council, I ask that you take immediate action to stop the CCBR’s assault on our community. Other municipalities across Canada have enacted by-laws to address situations like this, and I encourage you to do so here. Organizations such as CCBR should be required to follow postal regulations, hand delivery of material should not be a loophole. I hope that you will support the motion on the November 3rd┬áCommunity and Protective Services Committee to have your staff bring forward options for you to address this matter.

Thank you for your consideration.