The City of Kelowna will not be proclaiming Aug. 27 as “Celebrate Human Life Day.”
The Kelowna Right To Life Society had requested a proclamation from Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran to coincide with its annual fundraiser.
“Mayor Basran has declined your request for a proclamation based on our policy that proclamations are not meant to create controversy," the city said in a reply.
"They are issued at the discretion of the mayor, based on criteria commonly used in other Canadian cities to support unifying local interests. Proclamations are not approved if they cover matters of political controversy, ideological or religious beliefs, matters of individual conviction, or that advocate against human rights and freedoms under existing Canadian laws.”
Society executive director Marlon Bartram said they are concerned about recent vandalism of their billboard on the Westside and "vitriolic" comments made online.
"Bullying and attacks like these have no place in our community, and a proclamation by your office would send a message of tolerance and inclusiveness for everyone," the society said in their request to the city.
Bartram said he was not surprised by the city's decision.
“Unsurprisingly, we and all those who believe life is sacred from the moment it begins until the moment it naturally ends have been relegated to the back of the bus once again.
"No matter, we will continue to stand firmly in defence of our unborn brothers and sisters until the dignity of all human life is recognized and respected.”