Euthanasia Prevention Coalition responds to Dr. Forfar


On Wednesday June 5 I had the pleasure of speaking on euthanasia (MAiD) in Canada at the legion in Barry’s Bay Ontario. In good driving conditions Barry’s Bay is about six hours from my home.

The purpose of this article is to respond to the letter from Dr. Katie Forfar, published on June 29 in The Madawaska Valley Current. Dr. Forfar attended the presentation and stated that she has been a MAiD provider for the past three years.

Dr. Forfar challenges some of my comments in her letter. Some of her statements confirm what I said as being correct and some comments are not correct.

Her first emphasis is that I was paid for the presentation. Yes, I was paid for the presentation, but in the same way she is paid for being a MAiD provider.

Her second challenge was based on the fact that I use the word euthanasia (and not MAiD). According to the dictionary, I have used an accurate word, whereas MAiD is a term that was created in Canada to make people feel better about euthanasia. Euthanasia can be voluntary or involuntary. I did not suggest in my talk that doctors are acting outside of the law, therefore I was not speaking about involuntary euthanasia.

Dr Forfar stated that I referred to several atypical MAiD cases in that have been in the Canadian news that she admitted concern her. She states that I suggested that ‘healthy’ people could obtain MAiD just by asking. If she is referring to my comments on the case of the 27-year-old Calgary Autistic woman, well that is exactly what that court case was about.

She then confirms what I said about how euthanasia deaths occur. Dr Forfar wrote:

“It is true that a drug that causes paralysis is given, but it is given last after a large volume of drug is given to cause a deep coma. I have never observed anyone during a MAiD death appear to be in pain, nor short of breath or experiencing fluid in their lungs, nor have a seizure nor urinating or defecating.”

I never said anything about urinating or defecating, so that is her emphasis not my comment. Dr Forfar’s description is accurate, but the research indicates that the drugs used for MAiD will shut down the lungs. Once the lungs are shut-down then the heart will stop beating.

The MAiD lobby agrees with my comments. The MAiD Activity Book states:

“The third medicine makes the person’s lungs stop breathing and then their heart stops beating. Because of the coma, the person does not notice this happening and it does not hurt. When their heart and lungs stop working, their body dies. It will not start working again. This often happens in just a few minutes, but sometimes (rarely) it can take hours.”

I stated what the MAiD Activity Book states but I did accurately state that it is impossible to know whether the person in a deep coma is not experiencing distress as their lungs stop breathing.

Dr Forfar did not mention my concerns about Canadian veterans with PTSD or with disabilities related to serving our country being told that MAiD is an option. It is disturbing that veterans who have served our country and [who are] having difficulty receiving the treatment or services that they need were offered MAiD through the Federal Veterans Affairs department.

As stated during my presentation, I oppose killing people. MAiD/euthanasia is about killing people.

It is sold to the public as freedom or autonomy but rather it is an abandonment of people in their time of need.

Alex Schadenberg

Executive Director – Euthanasia Prevention Coalition


  1. Susan Dagenais

    I find it rather disheartening that a Doctor who relishes her role of ending lives feels justified in condemning a man who dedicates his life to saving lives as well as reminding people of the dangers of ‘playing God’ and the slippery slope of MAID which is precisely her as a Doctor.

  2. Eve-Marie Chamot

    “I had the pleasure of speaking on euthanasia (MAiD) in Canada”:- hmmm, no sir, talking about euthanasia can never be a “pleasure”:- it’s inherenly a very unpleasant topic with a very unpleasant history. You might do it as a duty to inform the public accurately about it but who can “enjoy” it? Btw there has been involuntary euthanasia in Ontario at least:- during the Mike Harris era it was common for some hospitals in Toronto to deliberately but secretly murder stroke victims by refusing to give them any life-saving treatments as per their own medical protocols but they were allowed to get away with it:- it was a “cost-saving” measure.

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