Quebec became first province of Canada to adopt Right-to-Die Legislation

Jun 7, 2014 12:12 IST

Quebec province of Canada on 5 June 2014 adopted legislation Right-to-Die that allows terminally ill patients to kill themselves with a doctor’s help. The legislation was adopted in a historic vote in the National Assembly with 94-22 majority.

With legalizing the legislation so called Dying with Dignity or Bill 52, Quebec became first province of the country to legalize doctor-assisted death.

It seems that legislation that legalizes euthanasia or assisted suicide will call on a judicial row with Ottawa, as federal law forbids euthanasia even with a person’s consent. On the other hand, Canada’s federal criminal code also prohibits assisted suicide and euthanasia and hence the legality of the legislation could be challenged.

Whereas, Quebec defended it by terming it a health issue, which falls under the jurisdiction of the province and not federal jurisdiction as it is not a criminal act. It was also defended by Quebec Premier Philippe Cauillard by terming that it deals with end of life care and not euthanasia.

Other countries where Euthanasia is legal are

• Netherlands
• Belgium
• Luxemburg

Assisted suicide is allowed in some countries like

• Switzerland
• US states of Oregon, Washington and Vermont

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