Claim; Alberta Women Sues Government Alleging She Was Sexually Sterilized as a 15-Year-Old Without Her Knowledge or Permission
EDMONTON – A Grande Prairie, Alta., woman has launched a $700,000 lawsuit against the province alleging she was sexually sterilized as a 15-year-old without her knowledge or permission.
In a Sept. 30 statement of claim, Darlene Gabler, 64, claims she has been left emotionally and physically scarred when she was sterilized in 1961, and has suffered severe post-traumatic stress and clinical depression.
Gabler was 15 when she was irreversibly sterilized under the Sexual Sterilization Act by the Alberta Eugenics Board, a government sanctioned board created to approve the sterilization of mentally deficient Albertans.
In her statement, Gabler claims she was falsely assessed as unable to properly parent a child due to mental disability.
Her parents deny giving their permission for the procedure, and the statement alleges the sterilization was medically unnecessary and should be considered an assault.
“(The Eugenics Board) knew or should reasonably have known the Sexual Sterilization Act did not apply,” the statement of claim reads.
It goes on to allege Gabler was wrongfully certified as mentally deficient, and would not have passed any mental disabilities to a child.
The lawsuit is seeking $500,000 in damages for wrongful sterilization, $200,000 in punitive damages, plus damages for past loss of income to be proven in trial.