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Hon. Hedy Fry speaks on Bill C-7: An Act to amend the Criminal Code (Medical Assistance in Dying)

By October 22, 2020 November 24th, 2020 No Comments

On October 21st, I spoke in the House of Commons on Bill C-7: An Act to amend the Criminal Code (Medical Assistance in dying).

Bill C-7 would:

  • Remove the requirement for a person’s natural death to be reasonably foreseeable in order to be eligible for MAID;
    • Create two sets of safeguards that must be respected before MAID is provided:
      • For persons whose natural death is reasonably foreseeable, the existing safeguards would remain
        • First, the 10-day reflection period would be eliminated.
        • Second, the request for medical assistance in dying will no longer require the signature of two independent witnesses, just one.
    •  For persons whose natural death is not reasonably foreseeable, the existing safeguards with some additional ones would apply.
    • The bill proposes a minimum 90-day assessment period, which would require that at least one of the practitioners assessing eligibility has expertise in the condition that is causing the person’s intolerable suffering.
    •  Specify that persons whose sole underlying medical condition is a mental illness are not eligible for MAID;
    • Allow waiver of final consent for eligible persons whose natural death is reasonably foreseeable and who may lose the capacity to consent before MAID can be provided;
    • Expand data collection through the federal monitoring regime to provide a more complete picture of MAID in Canada.