NEWS RELEASE March 18, 2016 CANADIANS MOSTLY OPPOSE ASSISTED DYING A new poll indicates that while Canadians favour a law allowing assisted dying for the terminally ill, they would not extend it to other medical conditions. Some 90% would allow it for the terminally ill, but well under a majority would support it for disability, chronic illness, mental illness, depression, and dementia. 31% would support it for chronic illness, with less support for the other conditions. Only 4% would support assisted dying on demand. The poll also shows 68% of Canadians do not want religious health care institutions to be legally required to provide assisted dying on their premises. This would pertain to 12 Catholic hospitals and nursing homes in New Brunswick, including facilities in Saint John, Bathurst, Miramichi and Caraquet. In February a Parliamentary committee recommended that all institutions receiving public funds should be obliged to provide it. The national online poll was conducted in early March by Public Square Research for LifeCanada. (See below for LifeCanada News Release or click here ) “The public favours legal change,” said NB Right to Life executive director Peter Ryan. “But they want narrow change. They do not support the wider provisions of the Supreme Court or the recent Parliamentary committee. They are certainy nowhere close to the death on demand policy advocated by Dying with Dignity.” Ryan collaborated with LifeCanada in setting up the poll. “We wanted to see what most Canadians actually believe,” he said. “To see if it differs from what is sometimes alleged. It actually does.” In 2015 the Supreme Court of Canada ruled it would be constitutional to allow assisted dying for persons with disability or chronic illness in “grievous and irremediable” circumstances of suffering. In their 21 recommendations to Parliament, the Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying” proposed extending assisted dying to the mentally ill and dementia patients, as well as minors. In the survey only 10% would allow it for minors without parental consent. The federal government is expected to introduce legislation soon. Ryan said the government “lacks a social mandate to permit euthanasia or assisted suicide beyond what the Supreme Court authorized.” He also it would be a big mistake for the government “to try to force doctors or health care institutions to violate their deepest convictions. If they do, they’ll be in for quite a fight.” For the full text of the LifeCanada Press Release, and for more details, follow this link:

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