What Oregon’s experience can teach us about assisted suicide
Originally posted on National Post | News:
To take your own life in Oregon is a bureaucratic process replete with rules, forms and approvals. The main stipulation is that you are sane, 18, and have been given a prognosis of less than six months to live.
On Friday of last week, a British Columbia court struck down Canada’s ban on physician-assisted suicide as unconstitutional and asked Parliament to re-visit the issue. But once the debate begins in earnest — experts predict the B.C. government will appeal the decision to the Supreme Court of Canada — eyes will turn to Oregon for a glimpse of what the future might hold.
In Oregon, it began with a ballot initiative. In 1994, a group called Compassion and Choices successfully got a question on the ballot asking Oregon citizens to approve the “Death With Dignity Act.” It passed by 51% but it was stalled by a legal injunction. Three years later it passed with 60%.