Quebec expands euthanasia regime

Quebec has expanded euthanasia to those considered to have lifelong disabilities.

Bill 11, which has now become law, removes the requirement that a person must be deemed to be at “the end of life” before being killed by medics. It will also allow those who have a “significant and persistent disability” to request so-called Medical Aid in Dying (MAID).

The change, which does not affect Canada’s country-wide euthanasia law, follows the Superior Court of Quebec’s 2019 ruling that a person’s death should not have to be “reasonably foreseeable” to access MAID.


The change in the law will also force palliative care hospices to provide euthanasia.

Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, criticised the new law for promoting the “eugenic concept, that certain lives are not worth living” and warned that it will cover more sections of society in the future.

Quebec legalised euthanasia in 2014, before Canada’s federal law was passed. The number of those who have been killed by medics subsequently rocketed from 63 in 2015-2016 to 3,663 in 2021-2022.


Earlier this year, an academic paper argued that being poor is sufficient reason for people to be allowed to undergo euthanasia.

In an article published in the Journal of Medical Ethics, Canadian bioethicists Professor Amy Mullin and Kayla Wiebe from the University of Toronto said euthanasia “should be available” for people “in unjust social circumstances”.

Canada legalised euthanasia in certain circumstances in 2016, but has already abolished the requirement for a person to be terminally ill and intends to extend it to those who suffer from mental health problems from 2024.

Also see:


Plan 75 film shows ‘a disturbingly realistic glimpse’ of assisted suicide

Palliative care expert: ‘Assisted suicide does not give a patient dignity’

Euthanasia to be available to Dutch children of all ages

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