The House resumed consideration of the motion of Mr. Lametti (Minister of Justice), seconded by Ms. Ng (Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade), — That a message be sent to the Senate to acquaint Their Honours that, in relation to Bill C-7, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (medical assistance in dying), the House:
agrees with amendment 1(a)(ii) made by the Senate;
respectfully disagrees with amendment 1(a)(i) because this matter, including questions of most appropriate precise definitions, whether those definitions should be included in the Criminal Code or elsewhere, and whether any consequential amendments or protections relating to issues such as consent and capacity are necessary in relation to such an amendment, will also be addressed by the expert panel and the upcoming parliamentary review, and the Government will collaborate with provincial and territorial health authorities to ensure a consistent approach;
respectfully disagrees with amendment 1(a)(iii), 1(b) and 1(c) because it would permit advance requests for medical assistance in dying before an individual has a grievous and irremediable medical condition, a change which goes beyond the scope of the bill, and further, this expansion of the medical assistance in dying regime requires significant consultations and study, including a careful examination of the safeguards for persons preparing advance request and safeguards for practitioners administering medical assistance in dying, all of which could be part of the parliamentary review undertaken to study this important type of advance request to reflect the crucial input of Canadians affected by the medical assistance in dying regime;
proposes that, with respect to amendment 2:
the portion of paragraph 241.31(3)(a) before subparagraph (i) be amended by replacing it with the following:
“(a) respecting the provision and collection, for the purpose of monitoring medical assistance in dying, of information relating to requests for, and the provision of, medical assistance in dying, including”;
clause 241.31(3)(a)(i)(B) be amended by adding after the words “respecting the race” the words “or indigenous identity”;
subparagraph 241.31(3)(a)(i) be amended by deleting “and” at the end of clause (A), by adding “and” at the end of clause (B) and by adding the following after clause (B):
“(C) information — other than information that must be provided in relation to the assessment of eligibility to receive medical assistance in dying and the application of safeguards — respecting any disability, as defined in section 2 of the Accessible Canada Act, of a person who requests or receives medical assistance in dying, if the person consents to providing that information,”;
paragraph 241.31(3)(b) be amended by replacing it with the following:
“(b) respecting the use, analysis and interpretation of that information, including for the purposes of determining the presence of any inequality – including systemic inequality – or disadvantage based on race, Indigenous identity, disability or other characteristics, in medical assistance in dying;”;
as a consequence of amendments 1(a)(ii) and 3, proposes that the following amendment be added:
“1. New clause 3.1, page 9: Add the following after line 20:
3.1 (1) The Minister of Justice and the Minister of Health must cause an independent review to be carried out by experts respecting recommended protocols, guidance and safeguards to apply to requests made for medical assistance in dying by persons who have a mental illness.
(2) A report containing the experts’ conclusions and recommendations must be provided to the Ministers no later than the first anniversary of the day on which this Act receives royal assent.
(3) The Ministers must cause the report to be tabled in each House of Parliament within the first 15 days on which the House is sitting after the day on which they receive the report.”;”
proposes that, with respect to amendment 3:
section 5 be amended by replacing it with the following:
5 (1) A comprehensive review of the provisions of the Criminal Code relating to medical assistance in dying and their application, including but not limited to issues relating to mature minors, advance requests, mental illness, the state of palliative care in Canada and the protection of Canadians with disabilities must be undertaken by a Joint Committee of both Houses of Parliament.
(2) The Joint Committee shall be composed of five Members of the Senate and ten Members of the House of Commons, including five Members from the governing party, three Members of the Official Opposition, and two Members of the opposition who are not Members of the Official Opposition, with two Chairs of which the House Co-Chair shall be from the governing party and the Senate Co-Chair shall be determined by the Senate.
(3) The quorum of the Committee is to be eight Members whenever a vote, resolution or other decision is taken, so long as both Houses and one Member of the governing party in the House and one from the opposition in the House and one Member of the Senate are represented, and that the Joint Chairs be authorized to hold meetings, to receive evidence and authorize the printing thereof, whenever six Members are present, so long as both Houses and one Member of the governing party in the House and one Member from the opposition in the House and one Member of the Senate are represented.
(4) The Committee must commence its review within 30 days after the day on which this Act receives royal assent.
(5) The Committee must submit a report of its review – including a statement of any recommended changes – to Parliament no later than one year after the day on which it commenced the review.
(6) When the report, referenced in paragraph (5), has been tabled in both Houses, the Committee shall expire.”;
section 6 be amended by replacing the words “18 months after” with the words “on the second anniversary of”;
And of the amendment of Mr. Barrett (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes), seconded by Mr. Brassard (Barrie—Innisfil), — That the motion be amended by:
(a) replacing the words “agrees with amendment 1(a)(ii) made by the Senate” with the words “respectfully disagrees with amendment 1(a)(ii) made by the Senate because, in the Justice Department’s own words, it "could be seen as undermining suicide prevention initiatives and normalizing death as a solution to many forms of suffering"”;
(b) deleting all the words beginning with the words “as a consequence” and concluding with the words “receive the report.”;””; and
(c) replacing the words "section 6 be amended by replacing the words “18 months after” with the words “on the second anniversary of”" with the words “section 6 be deleted”.
The debate continued.