FEDERAL GOVERNMENT'S DOCTOR ASSISTED DEATH BILL COULD BE HELD UP BY SENATORS

Apr 18, 2016

By Jane Brown

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The time-sensitive doctor assisted death bill is now at risk of being held up by senators who say they are more concerned about drafting a bill that is accessible to a greater number of Canadians than meeting the Supreme Court’s June 6th deadline.

Senate Liberal leader James Cowan says he would rather take whatever time it is to get the right legislation in place than rush something through which is flawed.

House leader Dominic LeBlanc has said he will extend debate to ensure all parties get a chance to speak about the bill in the Commons. He’s also signalled he’ll invoke time allocation to move the legislation along if necessary.

All of the party leaders have said they will allow a free vote on the doctor assisted death bill which would allow medical assistance in dying for a person “with incurable illness, disease or disability who’s death has become reasonably foreseeable.”

If no new law is passed by June 6th, the only federal regulation for doctor assisted dying would be the broad parameters set out by the Supreme Court.

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