Sue Rodriguez, once a woman who was lively and healthy women much like the rest of us was given the horrible news that she had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in early 1991 changing her life tremendously. Little did she know her fight for equality of life would create a milestone in Canadian Law. Sue Rodriguez fought long and hard to demand the right to assisted suicide, which at the time was illegal under the Criminal Code of Canada, being a punishable act for up to a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison. Ms. Rodriguez argued that Section 241 (b) of the Criminal Code (which prohibits assisted suicide) violated her constitutional right to life, liberty and security of the person under S. 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Unfortunately both the British Columbia Supreme Court and the British Columbia Court of Appeal dismissed her application. Sue Rodriguez at her final attempt of trying to grant herself the right to assisted suicide appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada, the verdict resulting in a five to four decision with the Supreme Court of Canada dismissing her appeal. In 1994, Ms. Rodriguez decided to take matters into her own hands, with the help of an anonymous physician Sue Rodriguez ended her life.
Assisted Suicide is something I will never be able to give an honest opinion about, unless you personally have had a loved with a terminal illness asking for assisted suicide I don’t think anyone can voice if this practice is fair or not. Any case dealing with a terminally ill victim grasps compassion from people looking at the case, so I think no matter what most people put pity on Sue Rodriguez and jump to her side. Ms. Rodriguez under the Charter Section 7 deserves to be entitled to: ‘Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental