CANADA

National Notes

April 1 1991
CANADA

National Notes

April 1 1991

National Notes

FETAL RIGHTS REJECTED

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that a fetus is not a legal person under the Criminal Code. With that finding, the high court said that two Vancouver midwives, Mary Sullivan and Gloria Lemay, cannot be convicted of criminal negligence in connection with the death of a baby during delivery in 1985.

NO SPECIAL FEE FOR SENATORS

House of Commons Speaker John Fraser rejected the Senate’s attempt to award its members a $153 bonus for every day that they attend sessions. Fraser said there were no parliamentary rules to cover the bonus that senators were seeking in addition to annual salaries of $64,400 and taxfree allowances of $10,100.

ALL IN THE FAMILY

Liberal Ross Young, 28, easily won a provincial byelection in the Prince Edward Island riding of 1st Kings—a seat that Young's father, Johnny, held for 12 years until his death from cancer in March, 1990. The victory leaves the Liberals with 30 of the province's 32 seats and the Conservatives with two.

CLOSED ON SUNDAY

Nine months of wide-open Sunday shopping in Ontario ended abruptly with a provincial Court of Appeal decision upholding the constitutionality of the province’s Retail Business Holidays Act. It overturned a ruling by the provincial Supreme Court last June that the legislation violated the religious freedom of store owners and shoppers who observe a holy day on days other than Sunday.

FIT TO BE TRIED

The Nova Scotia Supreme Court found Aubrey Dale Lutz, 50, fit to stand trial on three counts of first-degree murder originally laid 27 years ago. The charges followed the discovery of the bloodstained bodies of Lutz’s wife’s parents, Helen and Arthur Pudsey, and his sisterin-law, Audrey Jean Pudsey, in their Auburn, N.S., home. Found unfit to stand trial by reason of insanity in 1964, Lutz was confined until last December in a psychiatric hospital, where he received nearly 500 shock treatments.

A CALL FOR JUSTICE

For the third straight year, Human Rights Chief Commissioner Maxwell Yalden’s annual report to Parliament described the plight of aboriginal people as “this country’s No. 1 human rights priority.” Yalden also repeated his call for a royal commission on aboriginal issues.