moved for leave to introduce Bill C-445, an act to amend the Criminal Code (protection of child before birth)
Madam Speaker, fetal alcohol syndrome is one of the most devastating problems in our country today. Tens of thousands of children are born with this preventable problem. In fact fetal alcohol syndrome is the leading cause of preventable brain damage in children.
The bill seeks to prevent fetal alcohol syndrome by ensuring that a woman who is pregnant and who consumes harmful substances that are injurious to her fetus but refuses all forms of treatment can be put into a treatment facility against her wishes for the protection of herself and more important, for the protection of the fetus. This is only for a woman who has chosen to carry the fetus to term and clearly has nothing to do with the issue of abortion.
This law has its roots in the ability of physicians to put people who are injurious to themselves or others and cannot take care of themselves in a treatment facility against their wishes if necessary. The bill would give caregivers and medical personnel, specifically physicians, the ability to do that for the protection of the woman and to ensure that no more children are born with the devastating problem of fetal alcohol syndrome.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)