Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Canada's Justice Minister wants to expand euthanasia to people with mental illness alone.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

An article by Brian Platt published on November 24 in the National Post indicates that Canada's Justice Minister David Lametti told the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs committee, that is studying euthanasia Bill C-7, that he hopes that the euthanasia law will expand to people with mental illness. Platt reported:

Lametti said he believes the government has found the right balance in respecting the dignity of people with disabilities, and also their right to end their life if their suffering is too great.

Lametti also said he hopes the medical assistance in dying (MAID) regime will eventually be further expanded to people who are suffering solely from mental illness, but the government doesn’t have enough time to do it before a court-ordered deadline of Dec. 18 for this bill to pass.
The Canadian government introduced Bill C-7 in February, claiming that it was in response to the Quebec Superior Court decision that struck down the requirement in the law that a person’s "natural death be reasonably foreseeable" to die by MAiD. Bill C-7 was re-introduced on October 5, 2020 after parliament returned from being prorogued. 

*Sign and share the EPC Petition: Reject euthanasia Bill C-7 (Link).

Lametti told the Senate committee that the government  euthanasia for mental illness out of legislation for now, due to a lack of consensus. Platt reported that Lametti stated:

“We know that those with mental illness can suffer unbearably, that mental illness can be debilitating and that it can profoundly impact quality of life,” he said. But he said some mental illnesses “present unique, practical and ethical challenges.”

“Unlike most physical illnesses, many mental illnesses follow unpredictable illness trajectories for which there is always the possibility of a sudden improvement or recovery,” he said. “This means that in some experts’ view it is impossible to predict for any given individual whether their symptoms will one day show improvement or endure for the rest of their lives.”
Platt explains that critics of Bill C-7 include people with disabilities, palliative care experts and even Jody Wilson-Raybould, the former Justice Minister, who steered Bill C-14 through parliament in 2016.

Platt also wrote that disability rights group, Inclusion Canada, told the Senate committee that Bill C-7: 

“would signal that these Canadians are expendable and threaten their lives, dignity and belonging.”
Hon Jody Wilson-Raybould
In the House of Commons Wilson-Raybould questioned the decision of the government to remove the 10-day reflection period in the law. Wilson-Raybould reportedly said:
“Nothing in the Truchon decision of the Quebec (court), which the government chose not to appeal, requires this, and the Supreme Court of Canada, in Carter, insisted on the requirement of clear consent,”

“Palliative care physicians, disability advocates and other experts insist that this is an important safeguard.”
The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition presented to the Senate Justice committee on November 24.

4 comments:

Jesse James said...

If this is for mental illness, does this mean that many of the socialistic destroyers will be first in line to receive this treatment? After all, what do they define as mental illness since they can't even define the middle class? Let the leader be the first to use it and see just how it impacts Canada

MTt said...

I'm sick and tired of these egotistical elites in government that think they know best. How about taking some time and getting out of your arrogant bubble and listen to the common man. Oh sorry, I meant human kind! Maybe it's time to euthanize the entire Liberal government for their inability to think.

Alex Schadenberg said...

While I can feel your anger, it is not appropriate to suggest that we euthanize anyone.

Mzylstra said...

How can Mr. Lammetti not see how much harm will be caused if Bill C-7 passes without any amendments? Does he not care about people with disabilities or others who may be coerced into requesting euthanasia? This makes me both angry and sad at the same time.