Saturday, April 13, 2019

UN disability envoy demands protection for people with disabilities from euthanasia in Canada.

By Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

Roger Foley was pressured
to request an assisted death
A United Nations disability advocate recently challenged Canada's federal and provincial governments to make systematic change to ensure that the rights of people with disabilities are upheld in Canada.

One of the people with disabilities interviewed by the United Nations advocate was Roger Foley from London Ontario who was allegedly pressured by doctors to request euthanasia. Foley also launched a lawsuit after being denied self-directed home-care.
Catalina Devandas Aguilar
UN Disability Advocate.
CTV news, Avis Favaro, reported that Catalina Devandas Aguilar, the UN’s first ever Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities met with Roger Foley and other disability advocates. According to Favaro:

Roger Foley suffers from cerebellar ataxia, a fatal neurological disorder that limits his ability to move his arms and legs. He launched a landmark lawsuit against a London, Ont., hospital, several health agencies, the Ontario government and the federal government, alleging that health officials would not provide him with an assisted home care team of his choosing. 
Instead, Foley alleges, he was offered, among other things, a medically assisted death.
Rhonda Wiebe
Favaro interviewed Rhonda Wiebe, the co-chair of the Council of Canadians with Disabilities Ending of Life Ethics Committee who stated:
“This is about ripping him from his home and family and community and sticking him far away in a place where he will die alone,”
Devandas Aguilar told Favaro that she was primarily concerned with the effect of medically assisted deaths on the disability community. She stated:
Among her chief concerns were reports of patients allegedly pressured to undergo medically assisted deaths, a lack of community care that forces patients into nursing homes, and how the court system fails people with disabilities. 
Devandas Aguilar said she was “extremely concerned” about the implications of assisted dying legislation on people with disabilities after hearing multiple complaints. 
“I urge the federal government to investigate these complaints and put into place adequate safeguards to ensure that persons with disabilities do not request assistive dying simply because of the absence of community-based alternatives and palliative care,”
People with disabilities are being pressured to die by euthanasia in Canada. The cases we have heard about are the ones where the person refused. How many people with disabilities, and others, were pressured to die by euthanasia and succumbed to the pressure?

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