29 May 2014 Palliative Care M-456 passed!
Yesterday, the House of Commons passed Charlie Angus’ motion for a national palliative care strategy, almost unanimously (with only 1 vote against, by Bloc Québécois MP Jean-Francois Fortin). This motion is non-binding, meaning that it won’t necessarily change laws but it certainly has the power to direct the conversation and move towards enacting laws. The motion asks the government to work with provinces and territories to ensure individuals have access to “high-quality, home-based and hospice palliative care,” as well as providing more support to caregivers and encouraging Canadians to “discuss and plan for end-of-life care.” (You can read more on the CBC website here)
We wrote about Mr. Angus’ motion in April and also interviewed him on our Lighthouse News radio program, where he explained how he is “trying to bring in a better palliative care and end-of-life strategy that is positive and affirms life and affirms the spiritual components that we all count at those traumatic and sometimes profound moments in our lives”.
Many of you sent an EasyMail letter to your MP, encouraging them to vote yes to Mr. Angus’ motion – thank you for letting the government know that you believe there is a better solution for our ageing population that cares for the individual and the family. Whether you sent an EasyMail letter, signed a petition or called their office, thank you. These can seem like baby steps, but collectively, God is using our voices to be heard in Parliament. Stay tuned for next steps.
You may also be interested in reading Father Raymond De Souza’s op-ed in the National Post where he explains clearly the necessity of a national palliative care strategy and why this is something that ought to be embraced by all parties – not just those who have historically been on the right of the political spectrum. We seek to help governments enact good public policy, and we can agree that wherever you sit on the political spectrum: dignified and compassionate care for the most vulnerable is something we can certainly all agree on. Thank you Mr. Angus for your work on Motion 456 and thank you readers for engaging with your elected officials.
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