The EFC is opposing a requirement in Ontario that forces doctors to provide referrals for euthanasia against their conscientious objections. Our action involves seeking to challenge this policy – set out recently by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) – in a judicial review at the Ontario Divisional Court. The EFC’s intervention would support the Christian Medical and Dental Society of Canada (CMDS) and two other physician groups who are bringing this challenge. The EFC would speak as a representative of the Christian traditions to which the doctors challenging the policy belong. We’ll be joined by the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario. Here are some of the top facts concerned Canadians need to know about this case:
• Federal legislation for assisted suicide stated that no one should be compelled to participate in euthanasia.
• Ontario is choosing to disregard this directive. In Ontario, the CPSO policy requires that doctors actively refer patients who want euthanasia.
• There are alternative ways to ensure timely access to patient services without having to infringe upon the doctors’ freedom of conscience and religion as protected under Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
• The effect of the CPSO’s current requirement is that doctors who uphold the sanctity and dignity of human life from conception to natural death may face the difficult choice of capitulating or leaving the profession.
• In the background of this issue is an emerging discussion about medical schools and whether or not medical students with personal, moral or religious objections to euthanasia will even be permitted to enter.
Also in this issue:
Spotlight on the Ktunaxa Religious Freedom Case and recent EFC Webinar.