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Ottawa Hockey Wives give donated funds to Pro-Life Centre

December 4th, 2007     by Stacey May Fowles     Comments

In a piece on Rabble.ca today, Heather Mallick reports that the wives and girlfriends of the Ottawa Senators (who call themselves “The Better Halves”) are donating fan fundraising dollars to a Pro-Life organization.

“The Better Halves are giving a third of the proceeds of this year’s $50,000 Christmas Tree raffle to First Place Pregnancy Centre, an Ottawa anti-abortion group run by Pentecostal Christians.”

(By the way, the First Place Pregnancy Centre offers up Proknowledge.org as a resource. Remember them? Pro-life rhetoric masquerading as unbiased information?)

Basically, altruistic hockey fans have been inadvertently donating to a cause they may oppose — and beyond that, there are some tax issues involved:

“The raffle money is channelled through the Sens Foundation, the team’s registered charity arm, which is matching every dollar raised by The Better Halves… Both the taxman and the foundation agree that donations can only support registered charities. They can’t support ‘political or lobby” or “advocacy or special interest groups.’ And they shouldn’t.

As mentioned in a correction in the article, First Place Pregnancy Centre is a registered charity under a different name, Crisis Pregnancy Centre of Ottawa - but in reading the contents of their website, the intentions of the “charity” are certainly suspect.

“Were the Better Halves abortion hardliners or innocent bunnies when they offered their money to this weird organization? Does the Sens Foundation’s ‘due diligence’ include Google searches?”

More on “Crisis Pregnancy Centres” (from a Pro-Choice perspective) here.

UPDATE: After some further research it appears some people just don’t understand that First Place Pregnancy Centre is (however deceptively) anti-choice. In my opinion, this “resource” link from their website is pretty much all the proof I need. Taking donated money from unknowing fans and giving it to a pro-life organization does not qualify as a pro-choice activity. Planned Parenthood Ottawa explains fully why donating to the centre is problematic:

“We sometimes have women contact us after visiting First Place Pregnancy…sometimes they’re upset that they couldn’t get the information that they wanted and sometimes they’re angry because they feel as if they were tricked into believing that they were going to a pro-choice counselling session only to discover that that was not the case when they got there.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Fern Hill has more on First Place Pregnancy Centre’s controversial (now updated) links page at Birthpangs: “So, as we reported yesterday, while the Sens are still treating their fans as somnolent cash cows, there has been at least one good thing to come out of this PR fiasco — a little less lying bullshit on the Interwebz.” (Credit where credit’s due: it should be noted that Birthpangs was on the story from the very beginning.)

Tags: body politics, news flash

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