Canada’s euthanasia law is a moral outrage

Canada has the dubious honour of being the global capital of euthanasia

By Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

Kevin Yuill spoke at the Euthanasia Symposium at the European Parliament in Brussels on November 16. On November 17, he wrote a piece for Spiked  titled  “Canada’s euthanasia laws are a moral outrage”.

Yuill explains his position:

Canada has the dubious honour of being the global capital of euthanasia. Through its medical assistance in dying (MAID) programme, Canada killed more people with lethal injections last year than any other country on Earth – many of them poor, homeless or hopeless. And soon, from March 2023, lethal injections will be offered to anyone who judges their mental-health difficulties to be intolerable.

Yuill writes about Amir Farsoud:

The recent case of Amir Farsoud has shocked Canada and the world, leading many Canadians to start questioning the regime of assisted dying that has emerged over the past decade. Farsoud is a disabled 54-year old who has been approved for MAID by his GP. He applied for MAID because he is about to be made homeless and has no money. He needs just one more doctor’s signature and then he can be killed in 90 days time. In a disturbing interview with Toronto-based City News last month, he says: ‘I don’t want to die. But I don’t want to be homeless more than I don’t want to die.’

After the news report on Farsoud went viral, many have taken to Twitter to accuse Canada of ‘
quite literally killing off poor people’. Even the head of Dying with Dignity Canada – a leading advocate of euthanasia – has been forced to say that the case shames the nation.

The number of euthanasia deaths in Canada have expanded quickly since legalization in 2016. Yuill explains that since the passing Bill C-7:

Simply having a disability or suffering physical pain is now enough to access MAID. According to City News, this is why Farsoud, who suffers from back pain, likely qualifies. And in March 2023, euthanasia will be made available to those suffering only from mental-health conditions.

Yuill explains that Canada’s euthanasia regime has become the most permissive in the world.

Unlike other countries that have legalised assisted dying, such as Belgium and the Netherlands, Canadian doctors are not compelled to find other medical or social-support options that can relieve a patient’s suffering. It can be enough for a patient to say his or her suffering is intolerable. As an article in the World Medical Journal notes: ‘Canada… has now arguably the most wide-open state-facilitated suicide process in the world.’

Yuill concludes by stating:

In my 2013 book, “Assisted Suicide: The Liberal, Humanist Case Against Legalisation,” I warned that even allowing euthanasia in cases of terminal illness could open ‘a Pandora’s box’. If assisted dying is justified on the basis of ‘alleviating suffering’, then we should expect ‘more and more categories’ of people to ‘seek recognition of their suffering by demanding assisted suicide for themselves. The categories have a tendency to expand and those who insist that it should only be those with terminal illnesses had better be ready to answer these demands from those who, on good grounds, can demonstrate their own suffering.’ This is precisely what has happened.

Editor’s note. This appeared on Mr. Schadenberg’s blog and is reposted with permission.