Politics

Canada offered assisted suicide to a Paralympian veteran who wanted a wheelchair lift installed: report

Canada’s Veterans Affairs office offered to assist a Paralympian and veteran to commit suicide when she sought to have a wheelchair lift installed in her home, the woman told lawmakers last week.

Christine Gauthier, a 52-year-old retired corporal who competed in the 2016 Paralympics at Rio De Janeiro, testified to lawmakers that a VA official had offered — in writing — to provide her with a medically-assisted suicide kit. The case officer remains unnamed but reportedly made similar offers to at least three other veterans, according to the Independent.

“I have a letter saying that if you’re so desperate, madam, we can offer you MAID, medical assistance in dying,” Gauthier said in a hearing before the House of Commons veterans affairs committee.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned the incident in a public statement on Friday after Gauthier said she personally wrote him a letter on the issue.

CANADIAN SOLDIER SUFFERING WITH PTSD OFFERED EUTHANASIA BY VETERANS AFFAIRS

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL – MAY 09:  Christine Gauthier waves as she receives the Gold Medal in Women’s Heavyweight powerlifting finals at the Invictus Games on May 9, 2016 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Scott Iskowitz/Getty Images for Invictus Games)

The Service Dogs Of The Invictus Games pose with their owners from left to right Leonard Anderson, August O'Niell, Luc Martin, Christine Gauthier, Jon Flint, Stefan Leroy, Brett Parks at Shades of Green on May 12, 2016 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.  (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images)

The Service Dogs Of The Invictus Games pose with their owners from left to right Leonard Anderson, August O’Niell, Luc Martin, Christine Gauthier, Jon Flint, Stefan Leroy, Brett Parks at Shades of Green on May 12, 2016 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.  (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images)

“We are following up with investigations and we are changing protocols to ensure what should seem obvious to all of us: that it is not the place of Veterans Affairs Canada, who are supposed to be there to support those people who stepped up to serve their country, to offer them medical assistance in dying,” Trudeau said.

Canada first approved medically-assisted suicide in 2016, and the parameters around allowing it have since loosened. The law originally legalized assisted suicide only for those facing imminent death, but it now also includes those who suffered severe pain or disabilities, according to the Independent.

CANADA EXPANDING ASSISTED SUICIDE LAW TO INCLUDE THE MENTALLY ILL, POSSIBLY ENABLE ‘MATURE MINORS’

Gauthier’s story comes just weeks after a Canadian fashion company glorified assisted suicide in a commercial.

TORONTO, ON - MARCH 23  -   Retired Corporal Christine Gauthier spots Retired Corporal Natacha Dupuis. Canadian Invictus Games athletes during their last training day before they head off for the 2016 games. (Carlos Osorio/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

TORONTO, ON – MARCH 23  –   Retired Corporal Christine Gauthier spots Retired Corporal Natacha Dupuis. Canadian Invictus Games athletes during their last training day before they head off for the 2016 games. (Carlos Osorio/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Canadian fashion company La Maison Simons promoted the “beauty” in voluntary euthanasia in a promotional video titled “All is Beauty.” The ad includes a voiceover from Jennyfer Hatch, a 37-year-old Canadian woman who voluntarily euthanized herself after suffering from Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

“Last breaths are sacred. Even though as I seek help to end my life, with all the pain and in these final moments, there is still so much beauty,” Hatch says in the Simons video.

Simons says that the ad aimed to “help people to reconnect to each other and to this hope and optimism,” which he says “is going to be needed if we’re going to build the sort of communities and spaces where we want to live and that are enjoyable to live in.”

“The ‘All is Beauty’ campaign has come to an end this week. Simons is now entering their annual holiday sprint,” a spokesperson for Simons told Fox News Digital. “In this context, all of their teams’ efforts are focused on in-store and web holiday activities.”

Fox News’ Timothy H.J. Nerozzi contributed to this report.