Alan Nichols’ application for euthanasia mentions only one health condition as the reason for his request: hearing loss. “Alan was basically put to death,” according to his brother. He was hospitalized after being found dehydrated and malnourished in his house. He asked his brother to “bust him out” of the hospital as soon as possible. A month after being admitting, he was euthanized through MAID (medical assistance in dying), despite the desperate objections of his family and his primary health practitioner. They were informed of the procedure over the phone only four days before it took place. They have since reported Alan’s case to the police; they argue he was not in a fit state of mind to understand the procedure or make decisions for himself. He had no life-threatening conditions. He was vulnerable.
Canada’s relaxed laws around MAID came to international attention when CTV News reported that a fifty-one-year-old woman chose MAID after failing for two years to find housing that would allow her to manage her multiple chemical sensitivities. Despite the best efforts of friends and even her doctors to get her suitable housing in Toronto, letters left behind documented her desperate yet fruitless search for help. She begged officials at all layers of government to help find an apartment free from the chemicals and cigarette and marijuana smoke that worsened her symptoms. “The government sees me as expendable trash, a complainer, useless and a pain in the a**,” she said in a video days before her death.
These are only some of the terrible stories that have been reported after Canada became the first Commonwealth country to legalise assisted suicide and euthanasia. Advocates of MAID will point to how comfortable Canadians are with it. As a recent poll revealed, MAID is supported by 73 per cent of Canadians, with 27 per cent supporting MAID even if the only affliction is poverty, 28 per cent for homelessness, and 20% for any reason whatsoever. Those numbers may shift as disability activists and medical professionals continue to raise the alarm over the consequences of growing numbers choosing MAID, from 2,838 deaths in 2017 to 10,064 in 2021.