Madam Speaker, as members of the House well know, there are few issues as complex and as personal as medical assistance in dying. Medical assistance in dying forces us to reconcile many fundamental values: equality, respect for life and individual autonomy. We accept that reasonable people can disagree on the best way to achieve balance in respect of all the implicated interests and values.
As a government, we must make choices on behalf of Canadians that we believe are the right ones for each individual and for all of us collectively. Bill C-7 reflects our best assessment of sound policy that is constitutionally valid. We believe it is consistent with the views of most Canadians who participated in our consultation processes. We further believe it is responsive to many of the concerns and recommendations of numerous and varied experts whose opinions were shared in round tables, expert panel reports, academic articles and other sources.
We certainly know some members of the House believe the safeguards in the existing law reflect a more appropriate balance. We respect these differences of opinion. That is what we are here to do. We are all here to reflect the diversity of views of the Canadians we represent. However, we believe our chosen course of action is the correct one. It is the product of deep reflection and significant consultation, and puts the interests of each individual at the centre of their own medical choices.
We remain committed to the removal of the 10-day reflection period for persons whose death is reasonably foreseeable. We heard over and over again that this safeguard does not provide the protection it was intended to and that instead it aggravates these already difficult situations.
We are also committed to the proposal that would enable those whose death is reasonably foreseeable to make arrangements with their MAID provider for a waiver of final consent in the unfortunate eventuality that they lose their capacity to consent to MAID before the scheduled day. Without this change, some who are found eligible will choose to die sooner than they want, depriving themselves of precious remaining time with their families, rather than risk losing the option to die by their preferred manner of death.
While we understand the ethical and philosophical concerns with the idea of administering MAID to persons who are no longer able to consent, the practical reality of those who wish to spend a little more time with their families is of prime importance. Any expression of resistance would put a stop to the administration of MAID. This is clear in the bill. All that would be permitted is for the practitioner to carry out the person's own clear and precise wishes as to the date and manner of their death.
I would also like to take this opportunity to encourage my colleague to help us limit the unnecessary suffering of Canadians and help us ensure this important legislation receives royal assent prior to the December 18 court deadline.