SENATE HEARINGS CONTINUE ON ASSISTED DEATH LEGISLATION AS SENATORS CONSIDER AMENDMENTS

Jun 07, 2016

By Jane Brown

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Members of the Senate’s legal and constitutional affairs committee continue hearings today on the federal government’s new assisted dying legislation.

Constitutional expert Peter Hogg told the committee yesterday that Bill C-14 is inconsistent with the Supreme Court ruling that said assisted dying should be available to consenting, competent adults with irremediable medical conditions causing them intolerable and enduring suffering.

But C-14 allows assisted dying only for consenting adults in the advanced stages of a serious and incurable disease, illness or disability.

The Supreme Court deadline for approval of assisted death legislation came and went on June 6th, but Dr. Gary Rodin of the University Health Network told Zoomer Radio’s Fight Back with Libby Znaimer, patients can still make a request for a doctor assisted death. Doctor Rodin says his palliative team would simply move ahead cautiously.

“The provincial Ministry of Health has suggested that it might be wise to make an application to the Ontario Superior Court. It’s not strictly speaking, necessary according to the Supreme Court, but they’ve suggested and some people suggest that might be an additional protection,” Rodin explained.

The process to move Bill C14 through the Senate could take weeks if Senators call for amendments.

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