Que­bec mov­ing on right to die leg­is­la­tion

Cape Breton Post - - CANADA -

Que­bec will forge ahead with the prov­ince’s right-to-die law de­spite a re­quest from Ot­tawa to put it on hold.

The health and jus­tice min­is­ters said Thurs­day the law will still en­ter into ef­fect on Dec. 10, with the out­come of a le­gal chal­lenge against Bill 52 the only pos­si­ble ob­sta­cle.

The leg­is­la­tion, which was passed in 2014, would al­low ter­mi­nally ill pa­tients to end their lives with med­i­cal help.

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled last Fe­bru­ary that Cana­di­ans with un­bear­able and ir­re­me­di­a­ble suf­fer­ing could be el­i­gi­ble to end their lives with a doc­tor’s aid, but the jus­tices stayed their de­ci­sion un­til Feb. 6, 2016, to give Par­lia­ment time to re­place the ex­ist­ing law if it so chooses.

On Wed­nes­day, fed­eral Health Min­is­ter Jody Wil­son-Ray­bould asked Que­bec to sus­pend its law while her gov­ern­ment pre­pares its own leg­is­la­tion on the is­sue.

Que­bec Jus­tice Min­is­ter Stephanie Vallee ruled that out, say­ing the law will take ef­fect in two weeks.

“We’re stay­ing the course, ob­vi­ously” she said.

Ear­lier this month a hand­i­capped woman as well as a coali­tion of physi­cians said they wanted to ob­tain an in­junc­tion to block the law.

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