Wow this is fu**ed :A Canadian woman with disabilities is pursuing medically assisted death after failing to secure affordable housing Canadian dopers is there more to this?

Maybe. Even naturally occurring environmental things can be triggering for someone who is deathly allergic to nearly everything. Pollen. Decaying leaves, mold, fungus on the ground. Dust. Almost anything you might find out there.

I’m not aware of people being deathly allergic to molds or pollen or dust. There’s allergic rhinitis which is treatable with regular shots… Asthma which is managed with daily medicine…


Maybe you’re picturing a nice little cottage on the shores of a pretty northern lake? Here in Ontario, that might set you back 7 figures up in cottage country. Land isn’t free just because you’re in Canada.

How many people have this condition? Would it theoretically be possible to set up a group home specializing in care for people with this affliction? Maybe not in time to help this woman, but in general I mean.

A care facility for an otherwise intolerable medical condition would seem a better option than euthanasia.

Can we agree that there are probably better solutions that the government could actually help provide that do not involve death? I understand how desperate she feels, but the government response is shameful.

I’m a pretty strong supporter of an individual’s right to end their life. Unless you want to claim that anyone wishing to do so is obviously mentally ill and incapable of making such decisions…

But if she claims (and her doctors support) that she does not lack mental capacity, I’m happy to have the government help her out the exit door.

I was thinking more like a halfacre in some remote forested area with road access. Definitely not waterfront property. I’m guessing somewhere in the range of C$75k in value would be appropriate… C$20k for the building and C$40k for the land, plus $15k or so for permits.

ETA: What is the price-to-rent in Ontario? If I pull 1:15 from my ass that’d be monthly rent of around C$417 (\frac{\text{C\$}75,000}{15 \times 12} \approx \text{C\$}417\text{ per month}), which barely puts it in range for someone who lives on benefits of ~C$1,200/mo.


Euthanasia should be a last resort, not one undertaken because it’s too much effort to find her a home.

Oh hell no. Just because Ontario is big doesn’t mean land is cheap, especially in southern Ontario. And property in remote forest is pretty highly prized by some people, especially hunters and fishermen. Even if you’re going to Northern Ontario, in places so remote that the only real US analogues are the remote regions of Alaska, you aren’t likely to find anything prebuilt for 75K unless it’s already in pretty bad condition. Building in remote places is expensive - you have to pay to ship all your materials and pay extra for labour, so even in remote places homes are not cheap (on the plus side, you can take out permits as an expense - most remote places are unincorporated, so as long as you follow provincial laws you can do whatever the hell you want). And if you’re someone with a specialized medical condition, you do not want to live in remote Northern Ontario, where you could be a 6 hour drive or a lengthy ride in a prop plane to a hospital and there is almost certainly no specialized care for your condition.

Jacques Cartier: “oups!”

So why does it have to be Ontario? Here’s a lovely inexpensive property that no doubt could be repurposed/dechemicalized. The government could move in a tiny house to replace the garage.

I guess the issue I have is that it’s not like actual allergens, where they can be tested for and monitored, etc… Instead, it’s a bunch of nebulous stuff like “cleaning fluids” and “laundry fumes”, which could be anything- scents, the cleaning agents themselves, lubricants in the washing machine, and who knows what else?

That’s the problem- it’s likely to be VERY expensive and very time consuming to find or produce a home that this person can live in, and if the disorder isn’t even medically recognized(and is thought to be mental illness), I’d question whether it’s something that the government has an obligation to provide in that situation. Maybe a stipend or assistance would be appropriate, but I don’t know that it’s the government’s problem to solve this issue.

Yeah - since it is quite possibly psychological, it would be quite a challenge trying to identify and eliminate EVERY possible irritant. The one thing she DOESN’T see to be allergic to is public aid! :wink:

I mean, first because the person in question would likely want to stay close to their current friends and family. And again, there’s the issue with the availability of healthcare - Frobisher is a town of 160, and the nearest city that would have specialized medical care is Regina, several hours away. In addition, medical care in Canada is the responsibility of the provinces, and each province has administers a different system. Even if it’s the responsibility of the government to directly provide this woman with a home I think it would probably fall on the province. And that’s a big if; as far as I’m aware the government does not directly provide housing in the way we’re talking about here. Much more likely would be providing additional financial assistance and tax breaks.

I don’t think this is fair. The article does not paint her as demanding additional public aid, or even complaining about the amount of aid she received. Rather, she’s decided that the available aid doesn’t provide her with an acceptable quality of life, and she’s decided to die rather than live with that low quality of life. And she seems quite happy with that decision. The question is if it’s ethical for the government to allow that to happen.

If it’s a mental health issue, then she ought to be treated for that.

It’s absolutely fucked up to joke about this.

I find it hard to believe that Canada doesn’t have space and resources for this woman to have an off-grid tiny home made of appropriate materials.

Sure, but mental health rarely requires the expensive construction or renovation of a special space to accommodate someone’s issues.

This strikes me very much as one of those situations where this woman needs to be compelled to get treated for mental illness, and not actually be considered at face value whether or not she should get specialized housing.

This woman? Sure. The several thousand other people that would request similar treatment? More difficult. If the government supplies this woman with housing, do they need to provide all similarly effected people with MCS similar housing? Or only if they apply for assisted dying? If the latter, you’ve just provided a perverse incentive for people to use the program. What about people who claim to be similarly effected by radio waves and cell phones? Or those who say they are sensitive to electrical or magnetic fields? And who decides who gets these services and who doesn’t?

To be clear, I believe that the government should provide this woman with additional funding that would allow her to seek suitable housing. She is not lying when she says that the approximately 14,000$ the government provides from the disability support program is abject poverty, especially in a place like Toronto. But IMO the government directly providing housing would be a lot more difficult and a lot more complicated than people seem to think think.

The Placebo Effect.

You note “from their perspective”. This is the important part. If they THINK that the environment is “clean”, then they feel better. If they are put into a double-blind study where neither they nor the experimenter knows if the environment is free of electromagnetic waves, then there is NO correlation whatsoever.

It appears to be a purely mental condition, with no evidence that there is any measurable physical manifestation. Sufferers in controlled conditions cannot tell if there is electromagnetic radiation on or off at any given time.

This. She is suffering from a mental illness. She should receive treatment. If mental health professionals believe that catering to her delusions temporarily so they can address the root cause, then great. Otherwise, whatever they think is best should be done.

Since she is poor, the government should pay for this mental health treatment.

You’re moving the goalposts quite a bit here by using “electromagnetic radiatation” as an example. I think it’s safe to say that reputable medical professionals would be universally in agreement that alleged sensitivity to EMR is bogus. This is not at all true for multiple chemical sensitivity, which remains a mystery and there are only conjectures about possible causes.

Furthermore, this woman is said to be in the final stages of approval for Medical Assistance in Dying under federal law, which at the present time excludes all forms of mental illness. This would imply that competent medical professionals have assessed her condition to be “a grievous and irremediable medical condition” that is physiological and not mental in origin. If the cause is mental, this is not a causation that has ever been clearly demonstrated for MCS sufferers, either this woman or anyone else.