In August 2022, a scandal broke where it was claimed that Veterans Affairs Canada had offered medical assistance in dying (MAiD, or euthanasia), to a veteran that called in with PTSD. Understandably, this caused quite the uproar.
What makes this worse is that it apparently wasn’t just a one-time event. There are several cases that have now been reported.
Now, hearings are going on in Parliament about the issue. However, the response isn’t really one that would satisfy most people. It seems that the Government doesn’t ideologically object to members of the Canadian Forces taking their lives. Instead, it shouldn’t be offered.
If there are technical details about it (such as pensions and benefits), then that’s okay to address.
From the hearings and the transcripts provided, this doesn’t appear taken out of context.
(Time approx 16:01 in video). The hearing is interesting as the only issue seems to be with Veterans’ Affairs suggesting assisted suicide in the first place. If this topic is brought up, it’s to be referred to a supervisor.
(From 17:16 in the same video). While this may be well intentioned, it comes across as rather cold. “Talk to your doctor” seems to be a poor way to treat people (veterans) who are seriously considering this option.
It’s unclear when the Committee will eventually release their report, or even what would be contained in it. But these were all-party meetings.
With the expansion of assisted suicide in Canada, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it would be offered to members of the armed forces. This was never intended to be limited to people suffering with terminal illnesses.
Members of the Committee:
- Sean Casey (LPC)
- Emmanuel Dubourg (LPC)
- Wilson Miao (LPC)
- Churence Rogers (LPC)
- Darrell Samson (LPC)
- Rechie Valdez (LPC)
- Terry Dowdall (CPC)
- Blake Richards (CPC)
- Fraser Tolmie (CPC)
- Cathay Wagantall (CPC)
- Luc Desilets (BQ)
- Rachel Blaney (NDP)
Is this okay as long as Veterans Affairs doesn’t bring it up? It’s explained that the department has no authority on this topic. Fine, but isn’t looking after vulnerable people (both physically and mentally vulnerable) a role that the organization is supposed to do?
How is this considered health care?
Or looking after veterans?