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Abbotsford MP Ed Fast tables bill to stop expansion of medically assisted dying program

‘Vulnerable Canadians’ with mental illness should not be included, Fast says
Abbotsford MP Ed Fast has tabled a bill to stop the Liberal government’s expansion of assisted suicide to include those with mental illness. (Abbotsford News file photo)

Abbotsford MP Ed Fast has tabled Bill C-314 to stop the Liberal government’s expansion of assisted suicide to vulnerable Canadians with mental illness.

Fast said his bill addresses concerns that the Liberal government is “moving too fast and too far on suicide assistance.”

“More priority should be given to suicide prevention and providing the social and mental health supports that vulnerable Canadians need,” he said in a press release on Monday (March 6).

“The government is quickly moving from a culture of life towards a culture of death in which greater priority is given to suicide assistance than suicide prevention.”

Bill C-314 provides that the term “grievous and irremediable medical condition” contained in Canada’s MAiD (medical assistance in dying) policy not include mental disorders.

New legislation introduced in the House of Commons in February delayed the MAiD expansion for another year. Canadians whose sole condition is a mental disorder will not be eligible for a medically assisted death until March 17, 2024.

The press release from Fast’s office states that the Liberal government is ignoring the “growing number of experts who say that MAiD expansion is risking the lives of the most vulnerable Canadians.”

“Experts have raised concerns about this expansion, specifically highlighting that it is impossible to determine the irremediability of mental illness,” the release states.

“Experts and advocates are also concerned that this will create clinical challenges, blurring the line between suicide prevention and suicide assistance.”

RELATED: Liberals table bill delaying medically assisted dying expansion to March 2024

Vikki Hopes

About the Author: Vikki Hopes

I have been a journalist for almost 40 years, and have been at the Abbotsford News since 1991.
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