Winning journalism awards always gives a boost this time of year, but two of the awards The BC Catholic won this week from the Canadian Christian Communicators Association had special significance. The awards recognize the investigative journalism that this newspaper, through writer Terry O’Neill, has done on the issue of assisted suicide.
For a year, O’Neill has been documenting the deadly expansion of euthanasia in British Columbia, particularly as a substitute for palliative care. This year’s awards recognized his work, which revealed Fraser Health Authority patients are being offered death by euthanasia without asking for it, contrary to the health authority’s safeguard policy which requires patients to raise d first the issue of assisted suicide.
O’Neill found that medical staff at Fraser Health and elsewhere not only suggest euthanasia before patients ask about it, they do so even before giving details about palliative care.
We recently reposted a column by Yan Yi Zhu, a Canadian senior fellow at Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project and a researcher based at Nuffield College, Oxford. He cited cases of disenfranchised individuals who choose to die because they cannot afford to continue living or pay for treatments that would help them. This column has attracted worldwide attention.
In this week’s coverage on pages 8-9, O’Neill interviews experts who are working to make palliative care more available, but are witnessing how the growth of euthanasia is actually leading to fewer resources. palliative care.
In what sad state we arrived. We were assured that when the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the law banning physician-assisted suicide, lethal injections would only be in extreme circumstances to end unbearable pain for the dying.
Now, it’s highly likely that within a year, assisted suicide will be legal for everything from mental illness to child euthanasia.
If governments had decided that they wanted to eliminate the elderly, sick and frail from society, it is very likely that they would have implemented a plan exactly like the one unfolding across Canada today.
They would issue platitudes about the need for strong end-of-life care, and then fail to honor those promises.
They would do whatever they could to ensure that any health care provider who opposes euthanasia would be punished, called callous or religious fanatic, and have their property confiscated.
They would keep the growing death toll as quiet as possible.
They would talk a good game about the importance of safeguards so that euthanasia is not abused, and then they would allow policies to be developed and implemented in closed meetings and by word of mouth.
A parliamentary committee is currently examining euthanasia in Canada, although no one calls it euthanasia anymore. They call it MAiD, for medical aid in dying, the only example of a preposition included in an acronym. But they had to include it, otherwise it would be MAD, which is exactly what it is.
The committee reviewing the law has extended the deadline for receiving submissions to May 30. To share your concerns about what is happening with death and dying in Canada, please visit https://tinyurl.com/parlcttee2022.