Statement By The Minister Of Justice On Quebec’s Proposed Legislation On Physician-Assisted Suicide And Euthanasia

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OTTAWA, June 12, 2013 – The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today made the following statement in response to proposed legislation on physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia introduced today in the National Assembly of Quebec.

“The Government of Canada will review the implications of Quebec’s proposed legislation on physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia.

“The laws that prohibit euthanasia and assisted suicide exist to protect all Canadians, including those who are potentially the most vulnerable, such as people who are sick or elderly, and people with disabilities.

“The Supreme Court of Canada acknowledged the state interest in protecting human life and upheld the constitutionality of the existing law against assisted suicide in Rodriguez (1993).

“In April 2010, a large majority of Parliamentarians voted not to change these laws, which is an expression of democratic will on this topic.
           
“This is a sensitive issue for many Canadians, with deeply held beliefs on both sides of the debate.”

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