Friday, May 20, 2016

Media Release: Carter has been proved wrong; new law needed to prohibit assisted suicide & euthanasia

FRIDAY, MAY 20, 2016


Canada’s Bill C-14, which seeks to codify assisted suicide and euthanasia, is a recipe for elder abuse. Recommendations by the Senate Legal & Constitutional Affairs Committee do not solve the bill’s problems. The bill violates the Canadian Supreme Court case, Carter v Canada.  

Recent news stories have proven Carter wrong. This justifies a new look at the issue, including time for more study or a new law prohibiting euthanasia and assisted suicide. 

Contact Margaret Dore:  
(613) 899-0366 (in Canada, until 5/21/16); 
(206) 697 1217                              

Ottawa - Lawyer Margaret Dore, president of Choice is an Illusion, which has been fighting efforts to legalize assisted suicide and euthanasia in the United States, Canada and other countries, made the following statement in connection with Canada’s Bill C-14:

"The Senate Committee's thoughtful recommendations include that patient 'eligibility' be defined as a 'terminal illness, disease or condition,'" said Dore. "In Oregon, which has a similar criteria, chronic conditions such as insulin dependent diabetes qualify. This is because the the eligibility determination is made without treatment. The typical insulin dependent 18 year old with treatment will have decades to live, but without treatment will have less than a month to live to thereby qualify for assisted suicide and euthanasia." 

"Doctors can also be wrong about life expectancy, sometimes way wrong,"said Dore. "This is due to actual mistakes and the fact that predicting life expectancy is not an exact science. For all of these reasons, the bill encourages people with years, even decades, to live to throw away their lives."

"The bill is also a recipe for elder abuse, with the most obvious reason being a complete lack of oversight at the death," said Dore. "In the case of assisted suicide under the bill, no doctor, not even a witness is required to be present. This creates the opportunity for someone else, such as the patient's heir, who will benefit financially from the death, to administer the lethal dose to the patient in private without consent. The drugs used are water and alcohol soluble, such that they can be administered to a restrained or sleeping person. Even if the patient struggled, who would know?"

“The bill is a response to the Canadian Supreme Court decision, Carter v. Canada, which envisioned a ‘carefully designed and monitored system of safeguards, ” Dore said. “With no required oversight at the death, the bill has no such system.” The bill violates Carter.

"Carter understood that that the 'slippery slope' phenomenon, in which restrictive euthanasia blooms into expansive euthanasia for all types of conditions and people, including children, would not happen in Canada," said Dore. "Recent news stories prove this understanding wrong as euthanasia proponents now demand such expansion, This new development gives Parliament an opening to follow its own path, to protect the public. This could include more study or a new law prohibiting assisted suicide and euthanasia."  Dore concluded, "This is the only sure way to protect the public." 

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