BREAKING FROM THE OTTAWA CITIZEN:
B.C. Supreme Court judge strikes down assisted-suicide ban
VANCOUVER — A B.C. Judge decided Friday that the Criminal Code provisions making physician-assisted death illegal are invalid.
B.C. Supreme Court Justice Lynn Smith ruled that the current law violates the constitutional rights of the three plaintiffs who led the landmark legal challenge.
"They succeed because the provisions unjustifiably infringe the equality rights of Gloria Taylor and the rights to life, liberty and security of the person of Lee Carter and Hollis Johnson," the judge concluded in a 395-page written judgment released today.
While declaring the law against euthanasia invalid, the judge suspended that declaration for one year.
"During that period of suspension, a constitutional exemption will permit Ms. Taylor the option of physician-assisted death under a number of conditions," Smith ruled.
The judge found that "palliative care cannot relieve all suffering, except possibly through sedation to the point of persistent unconsciousness (palliative sedation)."
The judge added that accepted and legal end-of-life practices allow doctors to withhold life-sustaining treatment and administer palliative sedation to the point of hastening death.
Our friends at the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition are asking Canadians to contact Justice Minister Rob Nicholson, asking him to stay the Carter decision and appeal it to the BC Court of Appeal.
Contact Justice Minister Rob Nicholson at: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information go to click HERE to go to the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition website