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Veterans Affairs says worker ‘inappropriately’ discussed medically assisted death with veteran

Jarnhamar

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I think this had more to do with an employee being a moron than coming from any sort of VAC training. Someone from VAC said the employee in question was told to stop a few times by the member but didn't.

That said VAC seems to have a reputation of going out of their way not to hire former service members. Maybe they'll want to rethink that approach.
 

rmc_wannabe

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I think this had more to do with an employee being a moron than coming from any sort of VAC training. Someone from VAC said the employee in question was told to stop a few times by the member but didn't.
Regardless, lack of training or clear cut policy often results in people going off script. Any organization that does this will often throw the offending member under the bus, but the institutional failings should be the most culpable. If MAID is on the table now within Canada, develop a policy/train your people so you you don't end up looking like an ass in the G&M.

That said VAC seems to have a reputation of going out of their way not to hire former service members. Maybe they'll want to rethink that approach.
Ex-service members represent a vast spectrum of people. Look at every BMQ platoon, you'll fond 2 or 3 glue bags that then go on to have "rewarding" careers. Some of those gluebags get into the PS or work for VAC and remain gluebags, just in more comfortable clothing. It's still that 2-3 out of 40 ratio, but cases like this tar everyone with the same brush.
 

Brad Sallows

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Bill Barr was interviewed by Bari Weiss (transcript here).

"People are much more willful and willing to sacrifice institutional values in order to achieve a broader political objective."

General idea: professionalism has weakened, and people act on their own values and agendas using institutions as levers. No conspiracies, just bunches of people moving in particular directions without much thought as to what they might be undermining.
 

Furniture

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Bill Barr was interviewed by Bari Weiss (transcript here).

"People are much more willful and willing to sacrifice institutional values in order to achieve a broader political objective."

General idea: professionalism has weakened, and people act on their own values and agendas using institutions as levers. No conspiracies, just bunches of people moving in particular directions without much thought as to what they might be undermining.
The "deep state" is really just individual activists using their jobs to enact the change they want to see, regardless of the impact on the institution.

Don't like the PM? Use process to prevent them from achieving their goals. Think more people should take forever sleeps? Encourage vulnerable veterans to kill themselves...
 

brihard

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Back in the news

I mean, if you have a binary option set of “MAID” or “blow your brains out against a wall”, then yes, I guess technically that’s better. But imagine for a second if instead the department worked to suck less and provide compassionate and timely care and adjudication of claims? Wouldn’t that be wild?

While VAC, generally, needs a bunch more people, it certainly also needs one person fewer that it has at this exact moment.
 
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TacticalTea

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I mean, if you have a binary option set of “MAID” or “blow your brains out against a wall”, then yes, I guess technically that’s better. But imagine for a second if instead the department worked to suck less and provide compassionate and timely care and adjudication of claims? Wouldn’t that be wild?

While VAC, generally, needs a bunch more people, it certainly also needs one person fewer that it has at this exact moment.
Just the person I was looking for. Although that may be more a lawyer question.

If the veteran had not suggested suicidal ideation prior to the caseworker's suggestion, could the latter be liable IAW CCC 241?

Counselling or aiding suicide
  • 241 (1) Everyone is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 14 years who, whether suicide ensues or not,
    • (a) counsels a person to die by suicide or abets a person in dying by suicide; or
    • (b) aids a person to die by suicide.
 

brihard

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Just the person I was looking for. Although that may be more a lawyer question.

If the veteran had not suggested suicidal ideation prior to the caseworker's suggestion, could the latter be liable IAW CCC 241?
I’m not a lawyer, and I don’t have a full fact set. I have not, to this point, seen information that, to me, would obviously push it over that line. “Counselling” is a very meaningful term in criminal law, and it’s a high threshold. It means more than just suggesting or planting an idea.

Given that the VAC employee was suggesting the veteran consider a process that has its own multi-step internal safeguards involving medical practitioners, I would struggle to imagine a succesful prosecution for 241. “You should consider talking to your doctor about MAID” is very different from “you should eat your gun”.

Again, repeating the caveat since this is a real and right now thing, I’m not a lawyer and have only the facts I’ve seen in a couple news stories.
 

TacticalTea

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I’m not a lawyer, and I don’t have a full fact set. I have not, to this point, seen information that, to me, would obviously push it over that line. “Counselling” is a very meaningful term in criminal law, and it’s a high threshold. It means more than just suggesting or planting an idea.

Given that the VAC employee was suggesting the veteran consider a process that has its own multi-step internal safeguards involving medical practitioners, I would struggle to imagine a succesful prosecution for 241. “You should consider talking to your doctor about MAID” is very different from “you should eat your gun”.

Again, repeating the caveat since this is a real and right now thing, I’m not a lawyer and have only the facts I’ve seen in a couple news stories.
Totally understand. Hypotheticals like that are always tough to juggle with in the legal sphere.

At prima facie, I'd tend to agree, as there wouldn't be much in the way of provable criminal intent.
 

brihard

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Totally understand. Hypotheticals like that are always tough to juggle with in the legal sphere.

At prima facie, I'd tend to agree, as there wouldn't be much in the way of provable criminal intent.
Not even an intent matter. I don’t see the actus reus actually meeting the elements of the offence, again with the limited fact set. I don’t really know that any fact set could support a 241 conviction if it was simply causing, counseling, or inciting a person to engage a MAID process, because of MAID’s own statutory safeguards. To encourage someone to consider MAID means, in practice, that you’re encouraging that person to speak to two different physicians or nurse practitioners who each have to individually form a clinically informed opinion supportive of medical assistant in dying. Highly unlikely.

Weirdly, I did a law course last summer that used the evolution of MAID since 2014 to teach legal research methods. Great class and I dove pretty deeply into how our current MAID law came about…

EDIT TO ADD: Oh yeah, but again, fire this stupid bastard.
 

TacticalTea

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Not even an intent matter. I don’t see the actus reus actually meeting the elements of the offence, again with the limited fact set. I don’t really know that any fact set could support a 241 conviction if it was simply causing, counseling, or inciting a person to engage a MAID process, because of MAID’s own statutory safeguards. To encourage someone to consider MAID means, in practice, that you’re encouraging that person to speak to two different physicians or nurse practitioners who each have to individually form a clinically informed opinion supportive of medical assistant in dying. Highly unlikely.

Weirdly, I did a law course last summer that used the evolution of MAID since 2014 to teach legal research methods. Great class and I dove pretty deeply into how our current MAID law came about…

EDIT TO ADD: Oh yeah, but again, fire this stupid bastard.
Oh, interesting. That's my blind spot on MAID, I suppose. I am not fully aware of that procedure's intricacies.

I simply thought of it in the form of ''you should MAID yourself''. Which I could see eventually replacing what kids currently describe as ''self-deletion'' or ''KYS''.
 

brihard

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Oh, interesting. That's my blind spot on MAID, I suppose. I am not fully aware of that procedure's intricacies.

I simply thought of it in the form of ''you should MAID yourself''. Which I could see eventually replacing what kids currently describe as ''self-deletion'' or ''KYS''.
Nope. A doctor or NP has to sign off and another has to agree, and there are medical criteria too.
 

rmc_wannabe

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I simply thought of it in the form of ''you should MAID yourself''. Which I could see eventually replacing what kids currently describe as ''self-deletion'' or ''KYS''.
My teen called it "Kermit slip n slide" and I unfortunately lost it with giggles over a very sensitive subject.
 

daftandbarmy

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Second complaint...


Another Canadian Forces member alleges Veterans Affairs offered assisted death as 'support'​


'I was kinda hoping they would help me with my transition out of the military,' 'Bruce' said on a trauma-recovery podcast for CF members

OTTAWA — A second Canadian Forces member has come forward with allegations that a Veterans Affairs Canada caseworker offered him medical assistance in dying after he asked for support for post-traumatic stress disorder.

Still in active service, the Canadian Forces member referred to himself only by the pseudonym “Bruce,” out of fear of retaliation, in Wednesday’s episode of Operation Tango Romeo, a trauma-recovery podcast for Canadian Forces members hosted by former Canadian soldier and veterans advocate Mark Meincke.

“I had been suffering from PTSD and recently had a lot of suicidal thoughts,” Bruce told Meincke during the gripping and emotional podcast, explaining he’d contacted Veterans Affairs Canada for help and awaited a return call from a caseworker.

“I was kinda hoping they would help me with my transition out of the military, help me find new doctors once I get out, and assist me with any other kind of claims I might have.

“He was told in his original phone call where he was offered MAID, ‘we can do it for you, because we’ve done it before, and one veteran that we’ve done this for, after we completed MAID, after we killed him, we now have supports in place for his wife and two children,'” Meincke told the committee. He added that the caseworker allegedly told the veteran that MAID was a better alternative to “blowing your brains out.”

 
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