The government of Canada is appealing last spring’s ruling by the British Columbia Supreme Court that the Canadian law banning assisted suicide is unconstitutional. It is also appealing the one time exemption given to the woman who brought the case, a ruling that would have allowed her to be euthanized before the bill makes its way through the appeals process.
The government’s press release says its decision to appeal is based on precedent and on the need to protect vulnerable people. Here, in italics, is the government’s statement of its reasons:
The laws surrounding euthanasia and assisted suicide exist to protect all Canadians, including those who are most vulnerable, such as people who are sick or elderly or people with disabilities. The Supreme Court of Canada acknowledged the state interest in protecting human life and upheld the constitutionality of the existing legislation in Rodriguez (1993).
In April 2010, a large majority of Parliamentarians voted not to change these laws, which is an expression of democratic will on this topic.
The full press release is available here: