Ottawa, Ontario                                                               March 4, 2021

Death on Demand

Physician-assisted suicide law in Canada keeps getting worse. The Liberal government now wants to expand it, not only to apply to those whose death is “reasonably foreseeable”, but also to those who have a medical or psychological condition that is intolerable to them.

In February of 2020, the federal government proposed this expansion by way of Bill C-7. The expression “intolerable physical or psychological suffering” is not defined in the bill and is a vague and subjective criteria. A law, which was supposed to be applied only in extreme cases, would now permit assisted suicide as a mainstream treatment for any distress, physical or psychological that a person finds intolerable.

This could include treatable diseases such as diabetes or heart condition. The psychological suffering could include any problem, for example, caused by macular degeneration, frailties caused by age, financial pressures, poverty, and the lack of accessible care and treatment, or even loneliness.

This expansion of assisted suicide is of particular concern in regard to the disabled, who already experience discrimination, social prejudice, marginalization, and a lack of financial, medical and social support. As a result they cannot live out their lives comfortably and with dignity.  This proposal to allow for easy access to assisted suicide will only encourage them to escape their lives which, because of the lack of support, they interpret as being less worthwhile and a burden.

Bill C-7, therefore, literally permits voluntary death by lethal injection for any Canadian, over 18 years of age, who is experiencing difficulty in living. Rather than treating them with medical, emotional, and physical support, this bill provides the patient with death on demand. It will be the most liberal euthanasia law in the world.

Another tweak to Bill C-7 is the provision that a person whose death was reasonably foreseeable can consent to a lethal injection without delay. Such a patient can literally make the request for a lethal injection in the morning, and be in the morgue by evening. However, if the patient’s death was not reasonably foreseeable, then the patient suffering is required to wait 90 days before he or she can be legally disposed of – supposedly for the purpose of reflection.

This dangerous Bill C-7 was passed in the House of Commons on December 10, 2020, and sent to the Senate for approval.

The Senate now consists of a conglomeration of self-important individuals, the majority of whom were appointed by Justin Trudeau and, who, with a few exceptions, have a liberal, progressive bias. This bias was reflected in the Senate’s recommendation to the House of Commons that Bill C-7 be further expanded to include that assisted suicide be permitted for mental illness. If this occurs, it would mean that an individual, for example, with Alzheimer’s disease, for which a valid consent cannot be attained, or those with a treatable illness, such as schizophrenia or depression, may receive the final and irreversible right to die on request.

Hypocrisy of Justice Minister David Lametti

During the debate on Bill C-7, Justice Minister Lametti stated that he “does not believe we are entirely ready to safely provide assisted dying for people with mental illness”. He further repeatedly stated that before including mental illness in assisted suicide law, the matter should be studied further. However, in an abrupt turn, he announced that his government now agrees to accept mental illness as a reason for assisted suicide providing this does not take effect for two years. He also recommended the creation of a Joint Committee of the Senate and the House of Commons to review the assisted dying regime, including issues related to minors, advance request, mental illness, the state of palliative care, and the protection of Canadians with disabilities. The committee will be required to report back within one year.

The Liberal government has also agreed to appoint the panel legally required in the initial 2016 MAID bill, which required a five-year parliamentary review of the assisted dying law which was supposed to have begun last June, but which never occurred. The government has now agreed to finally get the review under way within 30 days of Bill C-7 receiving Royal Assent.

Canadians have already had sufficient experience with appointments by Trudeau to know the direction which both these committees will take, namely, they will recommend the facilitating of assisted suicide.

The Effect of Assisted Suicide Law in Canada

By Bill C-7, the Trudeau government has provided a remarkably efficient way to rid Canada of inconvenient lives. It will impact long-term care facilities, which can now be cleared of overcrowding and “difficult” patients (if such do not have family to protect them).

This bill turns medical practice upside down. Instead of treating the patient, the physician now has the easier option of providing death for a patient, saving both the bed and other financial costs of maintaining the patient. The cost-benefit consideration of care only, do not include providing humane compassionate care to patients, which has been the hallmark of medicine throughout the centuries.

This proposed bill, is so far reaching and devastating to our culture and values that even the Toronto “Red” Star, in an editorial dated February 26, 2021, stated “It’s important we get this right. Better to put up with more delay than to rush through a flawed bill that hasn’t had the full public debate that it deserves. The government should think again.”

The Conservative Opposition

The Conservative Party is doing what it can to slow down the passage of this despicable bill so aggressively being pushed through Parliament by the Liberal government, with the support of the NDP and Bloc Quebecois.

In conscience, the public must do what it can to stop this bill from becoming law. Although REAL Women has asked our members many times to contact their MP and the Senators about this bill, we feel obliged to do so yet again because the bill as written has become so hideous. It’s the least we can do in a terrible situation. Our consciences must be clear that we ultimately did our best.

Please write to your MP immediately (the debate is still ongoing in the House of Commons) and Senators, objecting to the entire premise of this bill.

A word of explanation might be helpful here to spell out the Parliamentary procedure. If the House of Commons agrees to the Senate’s amendment of adding mental illness as a reason for assisted suicide, the Senate then will officially approve Bill C-7. Once the Senate has approved it, the bill receives Royal Assent (the governor general’s signature) and the bill becomes law.

We must do what we can in this emergency.