REAL Women prefers to do its own research and draw its own conclusions, rather than rely on conventional wisdom.
This approach can lead to uncovering information that is inconvenient, unsettling, even alarming. This has occurred in regard to the legislation on euthanasia, misleadingly called Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD), passed in June 2016.
We make no apologies for the length of this article. The current explosive growth of the MAiD regimen, is causing unnecessary early deaths of thousands of Canadians and its development should be disclosed in its entirety. Canadians neither asked for, nor approved of, this radical change in “end-of-life” decisions. Instead, it has been imposed upon us by politicians, policy makers, and bureaucrats.
REAL Women believes that Canadians are entitled to be advised of this background information, which exposes how MAiD legislation has been intentionally manipulated without public knowledge, to provide the most permissive legislation on euthanasia in the world. This was accomplished by deceit and corruption, orchestrated by the Trudeau government.
On October 21, 2023, Health Canada released the most recent statistics on euthanasia deaths in Canada.
∙ In 2022, 13,241 people died under MAiD, bringing the total number of MAiD deaths in Canada since 2016 to 44,958.
∙ The total number of such deaths rose by 31.2 percent in 2022 over 2021, and rose by over 30% in each of the three previous years.
∙ MAiD deaths accounted for 4.1 percent of all deaths in Canada in 2022.
These statistics indicate that there were more deaths by euthanasia in Canada than deaths that occurred in the Canadian military in World War II.
In December 2022, The American Journal of Transplantation reported that Canada is now the global epicenter for harvesting organs from patients who have been euthanized. This medical practice is known as “Organ Donation after Euthanasia” (ODE). There were 286 worldwide instances of ODE and nearly half of them were Canadian. Canada is one of only seven countries legalizing organ transplants after euthanasia and our regime is one of the most permissive in the world. The high instances of ODE in Canada, for which patients have provided their consent, can be attributed to health care workers who have no restriction in encouraging the procedure, on the basis that organs of the patient will be of benefit to society and therefore the death will be meaningful.
MAiD has Changed Canada’s Cultural Landscape
Observers around the world, as well as Canadians, have been watching the increasingly permissive nature of the MAiD regimen, puzzled at this radical shift in Canada’s cultural landscape, and intrigued by the forces behind this change.
The following information will shed light on how this change has occurred.
Opening the door to Euthanasia
The door to euthanasia was opened by the Supreme Court of Canada in February, 2015, in Regina v. Carter. In the nearly eight years since this decision, there has been a growing permissiveness with respect to MAiD’s application, which now permits non-medical reasons for the procedure, such as poverty, homelessness, disability, failure to provide medical treatment, etc. The Supreme Court in Carter, however, did not create an open-ended constitutional right to euthanasia as euthanasia advocates loudly and misleadingly insist. The court stated that physician-assisted dying was protected under s. 7 of the Charter, which provides the right to life, liberty, and security of the person to those “competent adults who seek such assistance as a result of a grievous and irremediable medical condition that causes enduring and intolerable suffering”. The court expressly recognized this was an exception to the law protecting vulnerable persons from being induced to commit suicide at a time of weakness.
Despite this, advocates for a broader application of euthanasia, such as bureaucrats, a lower Quebec court judge, and the lobby organization, Dying With Dignity, have embraced the misconception that MAiD is a Canadian constitutional right.
Major Reason for the Expansion of MAiD
The expansion of euthanasia began with the 2016 MAiD legislation, which is filled with loopholes, allowing advocates to exploit this law. In less than an eight-year period, more euthanasia deaths have occurred in Canada than have occurred in both the Netherlands and Belgium since euthanasia became law there over 21 years ago in 2002.
Loopholes in MAiD Legislation
Loopholes in the MAiD legislation include the failure to provide adequate data-collection (physicians merely self-report), no oversight (family members are not able to obtain the records of the deceased), and vague, ambiguous terminology such as the failure to define “unacceptable suffering”, which is determined solely by the patient. Most significantly, the MAiD regimen is unique in the world in that it does not require that health care providers ensure there are no other options available for the patient. Nor does it include a provision that a patient not be approached to consider euthanasia when seeking medical treatment. In short, physicians and nurse practitioners may introduce MAiD to the patient even though it has not been sought by the patient and when there are medical treatments available.
Eliminating the Social Stigma of Euthanasia
The choice of the euphemism “MAiD”, for Canada’s euthanasia regimen was a deliberate tactic to obscure the fact that it legalizes the killing of a patient by a health care practitioner by lethal injection. The term “medical” in the name was purposely used to legitimize the fact that the lethal injection is not a cure, does not heal, but is used to kill the patient. Instead, the legislation is presented to the public as a liberating choice between the best and compassionate medical care and the continued suffering of an unnecessarily lingering and painful death. MAiD does not concern itself with palliative care or, indeed, any medical care at all. It is about empowering doctors to kill their patients.
The Trudeau Factor
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a major factor in the expansion of MAiD. Not only did he authorize this flawed legislation, but also directly, behind the scenes, he expanded the legislation as outlined below to normalize euthanasia as a reasonable decision for patients.
Dying With Dignity Canada (DWDC) – A Euthanasia Lobby Organization
Dying With Dignity Canada organization (DWDC) has existed for over 40 years, beginning in 1980. Its purpose has always been to widen access to euthanasia. DWDC presents euthanasia as a compassionate and empathetic procedure, providing a merciful and dignified way to end suffering. It consistently promotes the myth that Canadians have a constitutional right to euthanasia. Although DWDC claims it is a human rights organization, it is Canada’s biggest MAiD lobby group, whose goal is to lobby for expanded access to MAiD on demand. DWDC was granted a charitable tax status in 1982, allowing it to provide tax receipts for donations, but in 2015 its charitable status was annulled by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for its non-compliance, on the basis that it was working as a political organization. However, when Justin Trudeau became Prime Minister in 2015, DWDC gained power and influence. In 2018, its charitable status was restored to again permit it to provide tax receipts to donors.
Despite its charitable status, DWDC is a formidable political force in Canada. According to information obtained under the Access to Information Act, DWDC has had numerous meetings with cabinet ministers and bureaucrats. These cabinet ministers include Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion. It met with Carolyn Bennett, the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, who invited DWDC to participate in a round table on MAiD with the Minister of Public Safety, Marco Mendicino.
During this round table Ms. Bennett paid tribute to DWDC stating:
I appreciate all the work you do to educate the public on end-of-life issues and support patients who are exploring MAiD as on option. Thank you for the thoughtful advice you have provided the government during the legislative consultations, committee reviews of former Bill C-7 [the MAiD legislation] and the regulatory consultations, based on your experiences working with practitioners, patients and their families.
DWDC was in close communication with former Justice Minister David Lametti, who had voted against the MAiD legislation in 2016 because he believed it was too restrictive.
In 2018, DWDC received a donation of $7 million from the late Vancouver entrepreneur, David Jackson. This was transformational for the organization, which quickly hired 15 permanent, paid staff members. This permitted it to acquire enormous political, media, and court presence. According to public records, DWDC has had 19 communications with government officials on matters relating to MAiD.
Despite its obvious wealth, DWDC received $222,077 of funding from the Trudeau government in 2020 and in 2021, it received $204,655. These grants to this wealthy organization were obviously not because of its “needs”. The reason for these grants was likely to indicate to DWDC that the government supports and appreciates its work.
Health Canada has an extremely aggressive and engaged end-of-life unit consisting of 18 people. It actively focuses on expanding access to MAiD. It has drafted a “model practice standard” to promote a unified MAiD practice and procedures across Canada’s multijurisdictional healthcare regulatory landscape.
Health Canada as Propagandist
Not satisfied with pushing a Model Practice Standard for MAiD, Health Canada has also readily become a propagandist for MAiD targeting children as young as six years of age. Health Canada has produced a colouring and activity workbook for children aged between 6-12 years. The booklet is titled, “Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) Activity Book.” It states on the cover, in a friendly comic-style font reminiscent of crayon or chalk: “Welcome! These activities will help you think about Medical Assistance in Dying by someone in your life”. The intent of the book is to promote the concept of suicide and to justify the killing of parents, grandparents, and loved ones under Canada’s euthanasia regime. For example, the booklet states:
The word “medical” means the science of medicine and “assistance” means help. So MAiD means that medicine is used to help someone with their death. A doctor or nurse practitioner (a nurse with special training) uses medicines to stop the person’s body from working. When their body stops working, the person dies. This is done in a way that does not hurt the person. The medicines help them feel comfortable and peaceful…”
Corruption in the Courts
The guardrail included in the initial MAiD legislation, that it apply only to those whose death was reasonably foreseeable (i.e. terminal), was swept aside by a lower court judge in Quebec, in September, 2019, Truchon v. Canada (Attorney General). This judge, Christine Baudouin, held that the requirement that assisted suicide occur only when natural death was “reasonably foreseeable”, was unconstitutional and discriminatory. This was an unsound decision, not based in law, but on the judge’s well known personal support of euthanasia.
The federal Liberal government should have applied the Charter’s Notwithstanding Clause (s. 33) to overturn this decision or appealed it to the Quebec Court of Appeal and, if necessary to the Supreme Court of Canada. If it had done so, the Quebec and Canadian Attorneys General would have likely won the appeal. Instead, Justin Trudeau followed the court’s decision and made the amendment to the Criminal Code. At the same time, the Trudeau Liberals, in a shocking display of ineptness and progressiveness, extended the MAiD legislation to those suffering from mental illness. This inclusion in the MAiD regime was delayed until March 17, 2024, because of public pressure.
By this lower court decision, euthanasia was no longer a last resort, but became a normalized and accepted alternative treatment to end-of life care. What is also troubling about this decision is that the lower court judge, Christine Baudouin, was at the time a relatively junior judge of the Quebec Superior Court, appointed by the Trudeau government in May 2017. Yet, less than a year later, in 2018, she was appointed the judge of record for the ground-breaking Truchon litigation. A year after her decision in this case, she was appointed, in November, 2020, to the Quebec Court of Appeal by the federal Minister of Justice, David Lametti. Baudouin’s views on euthanasia were no secret. She agreed with her father on the issue, a retired Quebec Court of Appeal judge Jean-Louis Baudouin, a long-time supporter of state sanctioned euthanasia, who had published books and other publications in support of it. His daughter permitted her father’s publications and book to be entered as evidence in Truchon. Christine Baudouin failed to recuse herself in this circumstance, thus compromising the decision since she had a conflict of interest by allowing her father’s works as evidence.
Trudeau lied to the Canadian public, stating that he had no choice but to follow the Quebec court decision in Truchon. However, the decision of a single judge of a provincial trial court is not binding on other trial courts at the same level or higher courts in Quebec or any courts outside Quebec. It is difficult not to conclude that the Truchon case was orchestrated by Trudeau and Lametti to achieve their objective of profoundly changing the direction and purpose of the MAiD legislation.
Canadian Association of MAiD Assessor and Providers
In October 2016, six BC physicians who were active supporters of euthanasia, started to form an organization called Canadian Association of MAiD Assessor and Providers (“CAMAP”). Founded in 2017 as a national non-profit association, CAMAP was granted charitable status in 2021 by the CRA. In the first two filings of its Charity Information Return (T3010) with the CRA, CAMAP reported receiving funding from the federal government in the amount of $116,894 in 2021 and $874,035 in 2022. Further, according to Health Canada’s Fourth Annual Report on Medical Assistance in Dying in Canada 2022, the Government provided CAMAP with $3.3 million “to develop a national, accredited MAID training curriculum for clinicians to facilitate the safe and consistent delivery of MAID”.
The head of CAMAP is Dr. Stephanie Green who has performed over 300 MAiD procedures and is on DWDC’s Advisory Council. Another CAMAP Board member and member of DWDC Advisory Council is Dr. Chantal Perrot. Another board member of CAMAP is Dr. Ellen Wiebe who has performed over 700 euthanasia deaths and is also a member of DWDC’s Advisory Council. Another CAMAP board member is Shanaaz Gokool, also on DWDC’s advisory council, and who served as CEO of DWDC from 2016 – 2019.
CAMAP has no legal standing as a MAiD authority and promoter, but has plenty of influence. CAMAP has, without consulting other physicians, established guidelines educating clinicians on their professional obligations to provide MAiD as a “care” option. These guidelines apply to Canada’s 96,000 physicians and 312,000 health care workers. Trudeau and his government rely on CAMAP to expand access to MAiD. Trudeau’s government has tapped CAMAP to provide a “tutoring service” to lead the MAiD program in Canada even though the organization has no official standing as a MAiD regulator.
Health Canada’s 2022 Fourth Annual report on MAiD mentioned above, included several paragraphs of praise for CAMAP. The CAMAP founders, board members, moderators, and research directors are providing leadership in determining official standards and guidelines for MAiD. This demonstrates that a small “right to die” advocacy group leads the MAiD agenda in Canada. It means that this has serious implications for many Canadians.
Trudeau Government’s Further Facilitating MAiD
In 2018, Assisted-Dying Resource Centres Canada (ADRCC), also known as MAiDHouse, was registered as a charity by the CRA. In April, 2022, MAiDHouse opened its first space for MAiD in Toronto. Its sole purpose is to provide euthanasia “space” for individuals who do not want to be killed at a hospital or their home for a variety of reasons, including objections from family members. In its 2022 Annual Report, MAiDHouse boasted that, by “the end of 2022, 125 people (supporters and eligible patients) used our space at MAiDHouse.” The Report, however, does not offer a breakdown of actual people killed in its “space” or the number of health care workers present to carry out the procedure.
The first president of ADRCC (MAiDHouse) was Dr. Chantal Perrot a member of CAMAP. The current president is a lawyer Emma Carver, who had previously spent two years in Ottawa as medical legal advisor to the then Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould who led the effort to introduce MAiD into Canada.
ADRCC/MAiDHouse has plans to operate MAiDHouses all across Canada, calling it a “personalized euthanasia experience.” Since its founding, in 2022, ADRCC/MAiDHouse has received a grant of $2,376 from “provincial/territorial governments” as well as funding from CAMAP. The latest information available shows that in 2022, ADRCC’s T3010, filed with the CRA, reported spending only $2,330 or 1.48% of total expenses on “charitable programs”, while spending $118,872 or 75.73% of total expenses on “management and administration” and $32,489 or 20.70% of total expenses on fundraising. The remaining $3,281 (2.09%) of expenses was attributed to “other.”
Funeral homes are now, in some instances, providing space for MAiD service on their premises. For example, a funeral home in Montreal, Complexe Funéraire du Haut-Richelieu, launched a MAiD room as a new service, explaining that it is a natural step to provide customized care in regard to euthanasia that meets the client’s needs. The service comes at a minimum cost of $700 which includes the option of watching a movie or drinking wine before dying of the lethal injection. Clients, however, must provide their own medical assistance in the actual MAiD service, which is covered under Quebec’s medial insurance programme.
Trudeau’s Killing Machine
The euthanasia killing machine, called MAiD, has been authorized by Justin Trudeau and orchestrated and carried out by his government and assorted pro-death lobby groups without the public’s direct knowledge or consent.
Under the guise of compassion and respect for human rights, medically assisted suicide is being normalized and elevated to just another “medical treatment” option. As previously mentioned, the acronym “MAiD” is used to soften the reality that suicide is now not only state-sanctioned, but state-promoted. The professions in the healing arts—medicine, nursing and pharmacy to name but three—are being co-opted and brought into a dangerous alliance with bureaucracies that care not for individual patients but only cost-savings, turf protection, and expansion. The signals are clear for those who are paying attention and understand the dynamics at play: there is great danger in allowing, let alone promoting, state-sanctioned death as a “medical treatment” as the history of Nazi Germany attests only too well.
Given that the history of physician-assisted death demonstrated increasing permissiveness, can anyone, with even the slightest awareness of the not so distant past, trust government to create effective safeguards that mean anything in practice? Under Justin Trudeau there has been nothing but a wake of corruption and/or incompetence in the euthanasia file.
Canada’s culture has shifted to death on demand instead of care and compassion with a moral compass. It is high time to reverse that shift and start treating individuals with genuine dignity and respect, no matter what their circumstances, no matter what stage of life. It’s time to stop MAiD.