By Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition
The Report of the Special Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying (Committee) was released today under the veneer of a “Patient-Centred Approach.”
This report is not patient centred but rather it is oriented to how medical professionals will cause the death of their patients.
The report contains 21 recommendations that ensure access to euthanasia and assisted suicide, under the term “Assisted Dying” for people who seek to be killed by a medical professional, based on physical or psychological suffering.
The report recommendations go beyond the Carter Supreme Court decision that stated that a person must be:
“a competent adult person who clearly consents to the termination of life.”
Among the many dangerous recommendations, the report recommends assisted death, by lethal injection (also known as euthanasia), be done, without effective oversight (recommedations 12 & 15) for people who are not terminally ill (recommendation 2), who may be unable to clearly consent due to dementia (recommendation 7), or mature minors (recommentation 6), and for people with psychiatric conditions (recommendation 3), including treatable depression (recommendation 4).
The report also demands that medical professionals, who refuse to kill their patients, must refer those patients to a physician who will kill (recommendation 10).
Analysis of the recommendations:
Recommendation 1 states that the terminology does not require definitions.
One of the many problems with the Supreme Court decision was the that the language of the decision was not defined. Definitions are important to ensure clarity of the law.
The Committee decided not to define the terminology. If parliament does not clearly define the law, it will lead to future court cases designed to define or expand the excepted definitions of the law.
Recommendation 2 states that assisted dying not be limited to people with a terminal illness.