About a week ago Quebec’s Dying With Dignity Committee released their final report on assisted suicide in the province.
The report acknowledges the need for improved palliative care, going as far as to call for making access to it a legal right.
Supporters of legalising choice at the end of life were please to hear that the committee also recommended, as is the case in British Columbia, that the attorney general be directed not to prosecute doctors who help terminally ill patients die. The report goes even further, recommending legal options, as is the case in Oregon and Washington, for terminally ill patients who wish to hasten their deaths.
It will be interesting to see where the Quebec government goes with this report. The committee wants to see new laws adopted by next June.
Assisted suicide and euthanasia will likely remain federal crimes for the foreseeable future; however, as enforcement of those laws is provincial jurisdiction, more provinces may begin to go rogue, allowing reason, compassion, and the reduction of suffering to take precedence.