Toronto, ON March 18, 2021 – As of yesterday evening, Canadians can be killed by a doctor more easily.
With the enactment of Bill C-7 into law, there is no longer a requirement to be in a state of a terminal illness where death is “reasonably foreseeable.” For those who qualified for death prior to yesterday’s changes, the pause of 10 days prior to a first and second request for the procedure has been eliminated. The requirement for two witnesses is likewise eliminated. A new 90-day track is established for those whose death is not reasonably foreseeable.
More distressing, in two years, mental illness will be acceptable as a justification to be killed through the Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) regime.
The Bill was supported by the Liberal Party and Bloc Quebecois and opposed by the Conservatives and NDP. The expanded provisions for availability of MAID was opposed by major newspapers, including the Toronto Star, which stated in a February 26 editorial:
It’s important that we get this right. Better to put up with more delay than to rush through a flawed bill that hasn’t had the full public debate it deserves. The government should think again.
Minister of Justice, Liberal MP David Lametti tweeted, “This law will respect the autonomy of Canadians while protecting the vulnerable.”
The League rejects this claim. Protection of the vulnerable was also assured on the original version of the law. Those standards are now further relaxed. We share the opinions of disability rights advocates and mental health advocates who also have stood strongly in opposition.
The two-year delay to implement euthanasia to those suffering solely from mental illness is for the alleged purpose of implementing protocols and safeguards. The CCRL has always rejected the notion that safeguards can exist for this irreversible procedure. We instead have drawn attention to the societal pressure placed on vulnerable populations that accompanies the MAID regime, particularly with insufficient provisions or access to palliative care.
The League predicted this rapid expansion in our previous submissions at the implementation of MAID, upon the introduction of the original law in 2016.
Calls for even fewer restrictions will soon be debated, including allowing mature teens access to MAID. The Trudeau government has committed to examining the Senate supported amendment allowing for euthanasia by advanced directive, meaning that a person can make a request for death when healthy, years ahead of when that person might be in a state of distress and therefore unable to express consent for death via MAID.
The CCRL will continue to fight assisted suicide and euthanasia and all affronts to human life from conception until natural death. If you can help us, perhaps as part of your Lenten almsgiving, please do consider a donation.
Most importantly, please pray for the CCRL, please pray for our country on the eve of the Solemnity of St. Joseph, Patron of Canada.
We appeal to any of you not financially impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, who may wish to accomplish more almsgiving by sending a donation to the CCRL by clicking here or by mailing a cheque to the CCRL at 2305 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON, M6S 1P1, or by calling the office at (416) 466-8244 or 1-844-722-CCRL.
About the CCRL
Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) (www.ccrl.ca) assists in creating conditions within which Catholic teachings can be better understood, cooperates with other organizations in defending civil rights in Canada, and opposes defamation and discrimination against Catholics on the basis of their beliefs. The CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization with a large nationwide membership base. The CCRL is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members.
To donate to the CCRL, please click here.
For further information:
Christian Domenic Elia, PhD
CCRL Executive Director