Pashta MaryMoon (Facebook)

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

A woman who calls herself a “death midwife” has been banned from using the title after a lengthy legal battle launched by the College of Midwives of British Columbia.

The B.C. Appeal Court has overturned a lower court ruling that had granted Pashta MaryMoon the right to use the term when she argued that preventing her from using it violated her charter rights.

MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years and her work has nothing to do with delivering babies.

MaryMoon’s lawyer claimed in the appeal that the ability to use the title for her vocation is connected to her self-worth, identity and dignity, which should be protected under the charter.

A three-member Appeal Court panel unanimously overturned the decision and has granted an injunction preventing her from using the title, saying the issue is mostly commercial and the argument that her rights were violated was tenuous.

Writing for the panel, Justice Peter Willcock said the lower-court judge was faulty in two respects: first, she overstated the infringement of expression and second, she misunderstood the legislative rule that prompted the infringement.

“For those reasons, in my view, the chambers judge read the prohibition too widely when she found it restrained(MaryMoon’s) ability to describe her work by using the word ‘midwife’ in any capacity,” Willcock said in the decision released Wednesday.

READ MORE: B.C. college of midwives seeks to ban term ‘death midwife’

READ MORE: Victoria woman wins court battle to keep job title of ‘death midwife’

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

BC Supreme Court

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Penticton receives grant to construct new child care facility

The $2.9 million grant will bring up to 116 additional child care spaces to the city

Child sex offender relocated from Princeton after newspaper reveals his proximity to school

Offender convicted in 2019 of charges related to sex assault and child pornography

Okanagan School of the Arts unveils fall class lineup

Pre-registration for the first course on Sept. 20

WATCH: Meet Bella, Cawston’s talking cat

Bella has achieved international recognition for her speaking skills

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Man sentenced to 7 years for gas-and-dash death of Alberta gas station owner

Ki Yun Jo was killed after Mitchell Sydlowski sped off in a stolen cube van without paying for $198 of fuel

Wanted Enderby man connected to Shuswap stabbing caught in Coldstream

Alexander Boucher, 36, is charged with attempted murder linked to a stabbing in Blind Bay

70-year-old punched in the head in dispute over disability parking space in Nanaimo

Senior’s turban knocked off in incident at mall parking lot

Open houses planned to discuss future of Summerland Aquatic Centre

Municipality seeking input about proposed replacement

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

Fundraiser set up to held 10-year-old Summerland girl with cancer

Danica Yeoman is undergoing treatment at BC Children’s Hospital

Record-breaking 165 new COVID-19 cases diagnosed in B.C. in 24-hour period

Fifty-seven people are in hospital battling the novel coronavirus

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

Most Read