PQ to legalize medically assisted death next week

Véronique Hivon
La Presse


The bill allowing medically assisted death will likely become law in Quebec next week.

Although the timing will depends on how long MNAs wish to debate the bill, the junior health minister's office says they expect the legislation will gain official sanction within the upcoming days.

"Yes, we are confident because we will probably be able to start (the debate) at the begriming of the week, so we are very confident that we will be able to hold the final vote during the week," says Minister Véronique Hivon's spokesperson.

The PQ has a minority of seats in the Assembly, but the bill almost certainly has enough support among CAQ and Liberal MNAs to pass.

The political parties are allowing a "free vote" on the issue, which means each MNA is allowed to vote according to their conscience, rather than vote according to a party directive.

Last October, the bill passed second reading with a vote of 84 for and 26 against.

But Nicolas Steenhout, the Director General of Living with Dignity, is still hoping it will not pass.

"we're still looking at getting people to realize the impact of what's going to happen," he says.

His group is looking at launching a possible court challenge or pressuring the federal government to step in. So far, Ottawa has given no indication of what it intends to do.

Once the bill becomes law, medically assisted death should become available to terminally ill Quebecers within a year and a half.

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  1. George73 posted on 02/14/2014 04:36 PM
    Let me guess. Priority shown to anglophones and anyone wearing a religious symbol?
  2. Joseph posted on 02/14/2014 04:53 PM
    This is a step in a very very wrong direction. I see it open to abuse and it may be for a money saving ploy for the government, as our population gets older and people live much longer at a very high cost to our medical system.
  3. Mike d posted on 02/14/2014 06:55 PM
    Wow I can't believe they actually are doing something constructive.
  4. Karla Liebrandt posted on 02/15/2014 11:14 AM
    Correct me if I am wrong here, but is this not a federal jurisdiction?
  5. More BS posted on 02/16/2014 10:46 AM
    Cheaper than taking care of ill people.
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