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BCCLA seeks accelerated trial on assisted dying legislation

For immediate release

VANCOUVER, B.C. – Today, the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) asks the B.C. Supreme Court to prevent Canada from re-litigating issues already decided in Carter v. Canada, the BCCLA’s landmark case that secured the right to a dignified death for suffering Canadians.

After Carter, the government passed Bill C-14 – legislation that added requirements to qualify for a medically assisted death. In their new case, Lamb v. Canada, the BCCLA challenges the constitutionality of these additional requirements, asserting they leave some Canadians trapped in intolerable suffering.

The BCCLA is now asking the Court to prevent Canada from re-arguing the facts and legal findings established in Carter, which were unanimously endorsed by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2015.

If the BCCLA is successful, it would mean a shorter, faster, less expensive trial. Last month the BCCLA filed documents to add Robyn Moro as a plaintiff in Lamb v. Canada. Robyn spends her days in significant pain.  Jay Aubrey, counsel for the BCCLA, is concerned about prolonged suffering: “Every day that passes is another day full of intolerable pain and suffering for Robyn Moro and the other Canadians who are waiting on this trial. Canada has not identified any significant new evidence that will differ from what was considered in the Carter proceedings, so they shouldn’t get a do over at the expense of suffering Canadians.”

The BCCLA is represented by Sheila Tucker, Q.C. of Shapray Cramer Fitterman Lamer LLP, Joseph Arvay, Q.C. of Farris, Vaughn, Wills & Murphy LLP, and Alison Latimer of Underhill, Boies Parker, Gage & Latimer LLP.

Read the BCCLA’s court filed documents here.

What: Application to strike pleadings in Lamb v. Canada

When: Monday, June 12, 2017

Where: British Columbia Supreme Court (Vancouver, BC)

Who: Jay Aubrey, BCCLA Counsel available for comment