Jun 02, 2016
By Jane Brown
The Trudeau government’s controversial assisted dying bill has made its official debut in the Senate, and the initial reviews were extremely critical.
Regardless of their party affiliations, senators alike panned the legislation yesterday as they questioned Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Health Minister Jane Philpott for four hours in the upper chamber.
The most frequent objection concerned the government’s insistence that only those who are near death will be eligible for medical assistance to end their lives, which a number of senators say contravenes the Supreme Court ruling and the charter of rights.
If the Senate were to pass any amendments to the bill, it would have to be sent back to the Commons, where MPs would have to decide whether to accept or reject the amendments.
Even without changes, the bill won’t be put to a vote in the Senate by this coming’s Monday deadline set by the Supreme Court.