Assisted-dying bill wins approval in principle over Conservative objections


OTTAWA — The House of Commons has given approval in principle to a bill that would make it easier for dying Canadians to get medical help to end their suffering.

Bill C-7 was passed by a vote of 246-78, with only Conservative MPs, including Leader Erin O’Toole, voting against it.

The bill would amend the law on medical assistance in dying to bring it into compliance with a Quebec court ruling last fall — a ruling Conservatives have argued should have been appealed to the Supreme Court.

The ruling struck down a provision in the law that restricted access to assisted dying to those whose natural death is reasonably foreseeable.

The bill would scrap reasonably foreseeable death as a requirement for an assisted death but would retain the concept to set out easier eligibility rules for those who are near death and more stringent rules for those who aren’t.

The bill now moves on to the House of Commons justice committee for further study.


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