Local Member of Parliament Marilyn Gladu has introduced legislation she hopes will ensure Canadians across the country have quality palliative care, a piece of the “right to die” debate that appears to have been left out of C-14, which continues on the road to become law.
‘Physician-assisted death cannot be truly voluntary if the option of proper palliative care is not available to alleviate a person’s suffering.’—MP Marilyn Gladu
Gladu, who represents Sarnia-Lambton as a Member of the Opposition, said her Private Member’s Bill, Bill C-277, would ensure that all Canadians have access to quality palliative care.
“The External Panel on Options for a Legislative Response to Carter vs. Canada stated that physician-assisted death cannot be truly voluntary if the option of proper palliative care is not available to alleviate a person’s suffering,” said Gladu. “Those who have access to quality palliative care choose to live as well as they can, for as long as they can. This is why my Private Member’s bill is so important in providing access to palliative care for all Canadians.”
Gladu said her initiative includes a local story.
“In Sarnia-Lambton, only 43% of palliative care is covered by the provincial health plan, which is why the local hospice needs $1.4 million every year,” she said. “And in other areas of the country, only 30% of palliative care is covered.”
She said she is hopeful that the Liberal Government will support the proposed legislation.
“An all-parliamentary committee has studied the issue and this bill (C-14) is the result of the recommendations made. Also the Liberal Party at their convention passed a resolution calling for palliative care. It makes sense to move forward on this issue.”