Euthanasia

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What about living with dignity? A plea to the Supreme Court justices

What about living with dignity?  A plea to the Supreme Court justices

Taylor Hyatt Dear Supreme Court Justices: On Feb. 6, you unanimously ruled that existing prohibitions against assisted suicide be struck down. In their place, three recommendations were made for Parliament to propose new legislation: (1) the person requesting “assisted death” must be a competent adult who consents to ending their life, (2) they must have a “grievous and irremediable” health condition, including an illness or disability, and (3) said condition ... (Continue reading)

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Supreme Court makes assisted suicide a constitutional right

Supreme Court makes assisted suicide  a constitutional right

On Feb. 6, the Supreme Court of Canada threw out sections of the Criminal Code prohibiting euthanasia and assisted-suicide, saying they unjustifiably infringe the Charter rights of individuals who might consider killing themselves and would want assistance at the chosen moment of death. Canada joins the ranks of Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Colombia, Luxemburg, and the American states of Oregon and Washington, in allowing assisted suicide. In the ... (Continue reading)

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Dying with Dignity loses charitable status

Dying with Dignity loses charitable status

Hugh Scher of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition applauds decision. The pro-euthanasia lobby group Dying with Dignity has been stripped by the Canada Revenue Agency of its charitable tax status. Dying with Dignity was created in 1982 and had charity status from the beginning. In Canada, charities are allowed to allot 10 per cent of their financial and time resources to political but non-partisan ... (Continue reading)

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Euthanasia’s slippery slope

Euthanasia’s slippery slope

In “End of Life Decision Making,” a report issued in 2011, a so-called “expert panel” appointed by the Royal Society of Canada assured Canadians: “The evidence does not support claims that decriminalizing voluntary euthanasia and assisted suicide poses a threat to vulnerable people, or that decriminalization will lead us down a slippery slope from assisted suicide and voluntary euthanasia to non-voluntary or involuntary euthanasia.” That statement is plainly wrong. For ... (Continue reading)

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Being Mortal is mostly good, except for egregious euthanasia error

Being Mortal is mostly good, except for egregious euthanasia error

Dr. Atul Gawande is a renowned surgeon, public-health researcher and medical professor at Harvard. His latest book, Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End, contains many valuable suggestions for improving the care and treatment of terminally ill patients nearing the end of life. To begin with, Gawande notes that as recently as 1945, most deaths in the United States, Canada, and other industrialized countries occurred at home. Today, most ... (Continue reading)

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Assisted suicide bill introduced in Senate

Assisted suicide bill introduced in Senate

A Conservative and Liberal senator have teamed up to jump-start the stalled debate on MP Steven Fletcher’s euthanasia and assisted-suicide bill. Senators Larry Campbell (Liberal) and Nancy Ruth (Conservative introduced a private member's bill in the Senate that would legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide. Conservative Senator Nancy Ruth and ... (Continue reading)

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Supreme Court hears arguments in euthanasia challenge

Supreme Court hears arguments in euthanasia challenge

Lawyer Hugh Scher of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition argued that no safeguards will protect vulnerable people from being killed. In 1993 the Supreme Court upheld the Criminal Code provision against assisted suicide in a 5-4 vote as it  refused Sue Rodriguez’s request to have medical assistance to be killed. Now, 21 years ... (Continue reading)

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Canadian bishops launch national campaign against euthanasia

Canadian bishops launch national campaign against euthanasia

The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops have launched a national campaign against euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide as the country’s Supreme Court is expected to reconsider the issue in the near future. At the bishops’ plenary assembly in Beaupré, Quebec, this week, Bishop Noël Simard, chairman of the Catholic Organization for Life and Family, announced the initiative, titled “National Campaign for Palliative Care and Home Care, and Against Euthanasia and Assisted ... (Continue reading)

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Federal court overturns Robert Latimer’s travel restrictions

Federal court overturns Robert Latimer’s travel restrictions

Robert Latimer Convicted child murderer Robert Latimer has won a federal court appeal of restrictions on travel outside of Canada placed on him by the National Parole Board. Federal Court Judge Michael Manson said in a ruling released Sept. 16 that the appeal board of the National Parole Board acted “unreasonably” when it denied Latimer’s request to travel outside Canada without obtaining pre-approval on a case by case basis. “The Board ... (Continue reading)

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Toronto hospital illegally imposed DNR order against wishes of dying man’s family

In a rare display of disagreement, the Health Professions Appeal and Review Board rejected a decision by the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons and provided some Justice for the family of Douglas DeGuerre, who died on September 22, 2008, after doctors at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto unilaterally imposed a do not resuscitate order against the wishes of DeGuerre and his family. The Appeal and Review Board decided that: “Doctors at a major Toronto hospital violated the law by unilaterally imposing ... (Continue reading)

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In Carter Supreme Court should be bound by Rodriguez

In Carter Supreme Court should be bound by Rodriguez

Sue Rodriguez (left) and Lee Carter (right) In the 1993 Rodriguez case, the Supreme Court of Canada upheld the constitutional validity of the ban on assisted suicide in section 241(b) of the Criminal Code. Since then, advocates of so-called death with dignity have made several failed attempts to legalize assisted suicide by means of a private-member’s bill; most recently in 2010, when the bill was thoroughly ... (Continue reading)

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Canadian Medical Association shifts euthanasia policy

Canadian Medical Association shifts euthanasia policy

The Canadian Medical Association held its annual conference in August, where members of the organization debated whether changes to its policy on euthanasia were necessary. According to the Globe and Mail’s health reporter, Andre Picard, the group’s position has not yet changed. However, the CMA now, “supports the right of all physicians, within the bounds of existing legislation, to follow their conscience when deciding whether to provide medical aid in dying.” Picard believes the new stance recognizes that “while assisting ... (Continue reading)

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Quebec euthanasia law challenged

On July 17, two groups, Living with Dignity and the Physicians’ Alliance Against Euthanasia, filed a lawsuit before the Superior Court of Quebec in Montreal challenging the validity of Bill 52, An Act Respecting End-of-Life Care. The Act, proposed by the Parti Quebecois government of Pauline Marois in 2013 and passed by the Liberal government of Philippe Couillard in June, provides for “medical aid in dying,” which they contend is a euphemism for euthanasia. Living with Dignity, which represents 17,000 Quebec ... (Continue reading)

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Schindler fights for vulnerable, nine years after sister’s death

Schindler fights for vulnerable, nine years after sister’s death

Terri (Schindler) Schiavo Nine years ago, most of North America was captivated by the legal drama surrounding Terri (Schindler) Schiavo. The Florida woman sustained severe brain injuries in 1990 after her brain was deprived of oxygen. As a result, Schiavo relied on a feeding tube for nutrition and hydration. Schiavo did not have a living will. Her estranged husband Michael, and parents Mary and Bob Schindler, became involved ... (Continue reading)

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Quebec Liberal government legalizes euthanasia

The Quebec National Assembly passed a bill that effectively legalizes euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide, a law pro-life groups say is dangerous and unconstitutional. With the March election call killing Quebec’s Bill 52, which would have effectively legalized euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide, pro-lifers, disabilities groups, and other opponents of the proposed law thought they had more time to work to defeat the bill. When the Parti Quebecois government was defeated by the Liberals, many opponents of euthanasia hoped the new provincial government ... (Continue reading)

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