Seriously ill patients and family members urge the B.C. Supreme Court to allow for the right to die with dignity

Vancouver – Plaintiffs in the BCCLA’s death with dignity case head to the B.C. Supreme Court tomorrow to challenge the laws that make it a crime for physicians to assist seriously and incurably ill people to die with dignity. It will be the first day of oral argument in the case.

The plaintiffs are supported by a diverse group of individuals who have serious and incurable illnesses and their friends and families. They will provide evidence to the court that choice in dying upholds human rights and prevents unbearable suffering.

These individuals include:

  • A woman who has Stage IIIC anal cancer and has contemplated committing suicide by asphyxiation, drug overdose or freezing herself to death rather than suffer the end stage agonies of her disease;
  • A man with ALS who has tried to discuss his options for a dignified and peaceful death with his doctor, community nurse and palliative nurse, but has been told he is “on his own”;
  • The wife of a man with late stage Huntington’s disease who supports her husband’s decision to end his life by suicide, even though she “will never be ready to let him go and will miss him forever”;
  • A man who has Huntington’s disease who wants to avoid the fate of his mother who suffered from same disease and killed herself through starvation to avoid further suffering; and
  • The wife of a man who had ALS who begged her to shoot him to deliver him from the final agonies of his disease.

Read additional materials about the Assisted Dying case >>

Read the affidavits of seriously ill patients and family members >>


Grace Pastine, BCCLA Litigation Director: [email protected] or 604-630-9751

Further Resources

The BCCLA has a number of resources related to this case.

Related Content