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On Dec. 16, the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition of B.C. responded to a news media sponsored poll released Dec.15 indicating Canadian support for euthanasia.

“Canadians don’t want to terminate the sick and disabled, they want to care for them”, said EPC co-chairman Dr. Will Johnston. “The poll’s claim that Canadians overwhelmingly support euthanasia is just not true”, he said, citing the conclusive findings of EPC’s own poll conducted in June of this year.

“The Pollara poll findings are inaccurate because they don’t define 'doctor-assisted suicide.’ Our results show many people still don’t understand terms like euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide. They think we’re talking about pulling the plug when granny is all but gone,“said Johnston.

The EPC poll suggested that 71% of the public were opposed to assisted suicide when it was more clearly defined. It also showed a bare majority of support for legalizing euthanasia when defined as the deliberate ending of life by a pill overdose or lethal injection. A huge majority (81%) wanted the government to guarantee palliative care and pain relief for the dying as an alternative to more drastic measures such as euthanasia. “The political drive towards euthanasia completely ignores the clearly stated wishes of the Canadian electorate,” Johnston said. “Canadians will suffer if serious legislative change is made based on misrepresentation of Canadian public opinion.”

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