BC Supreme Court Ruling August 17, 2011

Here are some links to today’s news reports: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Supreme+Court+throws+lawsuit+launched+right+group/5269257/story.html

http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20110817/bc_assisted_suicide_farewell_lawsuit_110817/20110817/?hub=BritishColumbiaHome

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/story/2011/08/17/bc-assisted-suicide.html

Today, the BC Supreme Court denied Farewell Foundation standing in its civil claim against the Attorney General of Canada.  A key issue for Madam Justice Lynn Smith was our commitment to the anonymity of our members and their personal health information.
Despite this hurdle we remain committed to taking on the challenges for your right to the option of self-chosen death.

Our Two Options for Continuing: 

  1. Intervene in the BCCLA case 

Madam Justice Smith was highly respectful of the important issues that we raised.  She encouraged us to file an application to intervene in the BCCLA’s trial in November, which addresses common legal ground.  We will do what Madam Justice Smith suggested and we will seek her approval to intervene, to introduce evidence, and to cross-examine witnesses.   Given Madam Justice Smith’s comments, we’re optimistic that our application will be approved at our next court appearance, September 2nd.

A key reason to intervene in the BCCLA case is to inform the court about the less restrictive Swiss model and to argue that self-chosen death should not be unduly restricted to physicians. In our last announcement, it was noted that the BCCLA seeks very restrictive “physician-assisted dying.”  Farewell Foundation wants a wider range of options for assistance and our research shows that demedicalized self-chosen death, as it is in Switzerland, is a safe, effective, and accountable option.

  1. A New Civil Claim with Publicly Identified Members 

If any members wish to discuss the possibility of being publically identified in a new civil claim, contact us by email or telephone.   To gain standing, this member must be facing a life threatening condition or a serious disability and the member would want the option of assistance with self-chosen death from Farewell Foundation.

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