On October 24th, 2021, our mother, Donna Duncan, who had no terminal diagnosis, had been approved for Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) and was scheduled to die in two days. We spent the next week fighting for my mom's life by any legal means, including having her sectioned under the Mental Health Act. Unfortunately, my mother's depression could not hold her in the Psychiatric Unit beyond 48 hours. On October 29th at 8:30 pm, we were notified by our mother's common-law partner that she was dead less than 4 hours after being released from the psychiatric unit.
We are not opposed to providing death with dignity by Medical Assistance in situations where a terminal diagnosis or death is imminent. Still, we had no idea that Canada’s laws leave considerable room for interpretation by activist doctors, leaving vulnerable Canadians at risk. Our legislation leaves gaps that allow individuals who are not terminal to end their lives with little assessment or approval by their GP. It was explained to us by a lawyer representing a woman in Nova Scotia who appealed her husband’s MAID application, “There is no case law regarding MAID in Canada. It’s the Wild West right now”.
On March 17th, 2024, these already lax laws will expand further to include people with mental illness as a sole condition to be approved to die in Canada.
We are sharing our story because no family should experience this devastating loss. We hope to enlighten others about the shocking legislation that leaves Canada’s Euthanasia deaths the highest in the world.
Changing Legislation is a long, complicated, extremely costly process, and we need all the help we can get. Alongside the Abbotsford Police Department, Fraser Health Authority has stonewalled our legal team's efforts to receive our mom's MAiD assessments at every step. These assessments are critical in proving that our mom's death was not lawful.
Please spread the word and help us gain the support we need.