The liberal government is introducing legislation to delay the expansion of Medical Assisted Death (MAID) legislation for those suffering solely from mental illness by one year.
Justice Minister David Rameti said Thursday: “It’s clear we need more time to get this right.” needed to move forward.
“We will provide time to assist our state and territory partners, and the medical and nursing communities, in preparing to deliver MAID in these circumstances.”
Lametti said the delay will allow ongoing research into the risks of spreading MAID to this group of people to be completed.
“The safety of Canadians is our number one priority,” Rametti said. “That’s why we’re taking the extra time needed to get this right.”
The government passed the MAID Law in 2016. Quebec’s High Court invalidated the law in 2019. This was because death was limited to “reasonably foreseeable” persons.
Bill C-7, which passed Congress in March 2021, followed the court’s ruling and removed that requirement. The law also temporarily postpones the extension of MAID to cases involving only mental illness until March 2023.
“I want to confirm”: Rametti
Rametti said many states were ready to expand MAID in March of this year, but the federal government has said it will seek an extension to make sure no jurisdictions are in a hurry. Decided.
“COVID delayed everything,” Rametti said. “Honestly, we could have pushed the original dates forward, but we want to ensure safety and make sure everyone is on the same page.
“We especially hope that concerned medical personnel, medical schools and universities will be given time to understand what is happening.”
just now,@OurCommons filed Bill C-39 in Until March 17, 2024, the only underlying medical condition is mental illness.I will have more to say at the press conference with the Minister at 11:45 am. @Carolyn_Bennett.
Rametti said the extension would give the Ad Hoc Joint Commission on End-of-life Care Assistance time to complete its final report on MAID for people suffering from mental illness alone.
Committee We made an interim report Last June, it concluded that it was a race against time to publish its recommendations in time for the expansion of the MAID Act.
“While some work is already underway … there are concerns that more work is needed to ensure all necessary measures are in place by the March 2023 deadline,” said the interim report. said.
The new law’s “mental illness” refers primarily to psychiatric conditions such as depression and personality disorders. Neurocognitive or neurodevelopmental disorders or related conditions are not covered.
People with neurodegenerative diseases that lead to dementia can qualify for MAID under current rules, officials said.
If Bill C-39 is not passed by March 17 of this year, MAID for people with mental illness alone will become law in Canada. No bills can be passed after that date as the two-year deadline has expired.
Rametti said he is confident the bill will be passed in time and has already secured the support of the NDP and bloc in the House of Representatives.
The minister said he hoped the Conservatives would agree as they have shown support for such delays in the past. He also said the C-39 would not be as open as it is a simple obsolete.
Die with dignity Canada said in a series of social media posts that while it understands the need to provide safeguards and protect vulnerable populations, much of that work has already been done. I was.
“For the small number of people across Canada who suffer from treatment-resistant mental disorders and want the right to apply for MAID, this delay will help magnify their suffering. I’m here.