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News Release - Hearing starts today on medically assisted death

Monday, June 12, 2017

Queen’s University ethics expert Udo Schuklenk is available to comment on a Supreme Court of British Columbia hearing beginning today that will determine how long grievously ill Canadians must wait to find out if their right to a medically assisted death has been violated by the federal government’s restrictive approach to the issue.

The hearing is part of a constitutional challenge to the new law, which allows only those who are already near death to enlist medical help to end their lives.

“It is truly unfortunate that the federal government has chosen to use the resources at its disposal to fight grievously ill Canadians who deserve access to medical aid in dying,” says Dr. Schuklenk. “The plaintiff, Kay Carter, after whom the landmark Supreme Court case is named, would not be eligible under the restrictive regime introduced by the Trudeau government. It is ethically impossible to defend a policy that excludes competent irreversibly grievously ill Canadians, who do not consider their lives worth living, and to ask for assistance in dying, from access to medical aid in dying.

To arrange an interview, please contact communications officer Anne Craig (613-533-2877 or anne.craig@queensu.ca) at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada.

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Attention broadcasters: Queen’s has facilities to provide broadcast quality audio and video feeds. For television interviews, we can provide a live, real-time double ender from Kingston with HD-SDI. Please call for details.

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