Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a petition from 25 people from Ontario, Quebec, Saskatchewan and Alberta, 16 of whom are women. I have a second petition to exactly the same effect from 173 people from British Columbia, 80 of whom are women.
The petitions are with respect to the fact that Canada's 400-year-old definition of a human being states that a child does not become a human being until the moment of complete birth, contrary to 21st century medical evidence, and that Parliament should reject any law that states that some human beings are not human.
The petitioners call upon the House of Commons and Parliament assembled to confirm that every human being is recognized by Canadian law as human by amending section 223 of the Criminal Code in such a way as to reflect 21st century medical evidence.
I have another petition that is a little different. It points out that subsection 223(1) of the Criminal Code remains identical to section 195(1) of the Statutes of Canada, 1953-54, and refers to the science of embryology, ultrasound, intrauterine photography, microsurgery, fetal health interventions, all confirming that a child is distinct before birth.
The petitioners ask Parliament to strike down subsections 223(1) and 223(2) and replace them with definitions that currently reflect embryological knowledge.