Quebecers behind assisted dying ruling want to see it become election issue

Click to play video: 'Dying with dignity law could become federal election issue' Dying with dignity law could become federal election issue
WATCH: Reaction has been swift after Quebec Court judge struck down parts of Canada's medically assisted dying law. Quebec Superior Court Justice Christine Baudouin called elements of the law unconstitutional and too restrictive. As Global's Amanda Jelowicki explains, the plaintiffs who filed the lawsuit are thrilled with the decision. – Sep 12, 2019

Two Quebecers who were successful in getting a court to invalidate sections of the federal and Quebec laws on medically assisted dying want the issue to be given a prominent place on the federal campaign trail.

Nicole Gladu and Jean Truchon both suffer from incurable illnesses but had seen previous requests for an assisted death under the law denied.

READ MORE: Quebec professional orders want province to challenge medically-assisted dying law

Justice Christine Baudouin ruled invalid the Criminal Code requirement that a natural death be “reasonably foreseeable” before someone can be eligible for assisted death.

She also invalidated a section of the Quebec law that says people must “be at the end of life” to receive the procedure.

WATCH BELOW: Assisted-dying law in Quebec

Click to play video: 'Assisted-dying law in Quebec' Assisted-dying law in Quebec
Assisted-dying law in Quebec – Apr 14, 2016

Baudouin suspended application of the judgment for six months to give federal and provincial legislators a chance to modify the laws, but she granted an exemption to Truchon and Gladu to allow them to seek medical aid in dying.

Story continues below advertisement

READ MORE: Fighting to die — is medically assisted death criteria too vague?

They told a news conference Thursday they don’t know what steps they’ll take next, but Gladu says the timing of the decision on the first day of a federal election campaign couldn’t be better. She hopes party leaders commit to following through on the court’s ruling.

WATCH BELOW: Quebec doctors want better palliative care services

Click to play video: 'Quebec doctors want better palliative care services' Quebec doctors want better palliative care services
Quebec doctors want better palliative care services – Jun 12, 2018

Jean-Pierre Menard, a lawyer for the two Quebecers, had argued that a 2015 Supreme Court of Canada decision decriminalizing medical assistance in dying established suffering — not imminent death — as the most important consideration.

READ MORE: Quebecers want to change medically-assisted death laws

The federal and provincial attorneys general have 30 days to file an appeal, but Menard urged them not to and instead to change the laws as soon as possible.

Story continues below advertisement

Both governments say they’re studying the issue.

Sponsored content