The Library

The plan is to have experts in each of the subject areas below provide plain-language answers to the questions in a blog post, offering references and readings from which we could all benefit. Those readings and references will be compiled here, in the library section.


Philosophy – Who decides the value of a human life? What is dignity, and what threatens to erode it? How can we think through the issues that arise when dignity is threatened or eroded? How is language used to clarify or obscure the issues around euthanasia and assisted suicide?

History of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia – Europe, Canada and Around the World. Where was euthanasia of disabled people first practiced? When and where did it become popular in the modern age? What does history tell us about the safety of expanding categories of death beyond the people who are actually dying?

Law and Policy – How does law get written and by whom? How does law change? How does politics affect law, and vice versa? How do the Courts fit in?

Health, Healthcare, Homecare, etc. – What’s federally regulated, what’s provincial and what’s municipal? What are your rights within the healthcare system? What if you can’t get your needs met within the system? Where does palliative care fit in? Is there a significant difference between physical disability and mental illness when it comes to MAID?

Economics – Poverty and deep poverty are issues that face many people with disabilities in Canada. Many workplaces are not disability-friendly; many transportation systems pose access barriers; educational systems may discriminate against disabled learners; and many pwd’s face one of the biggest barriers of all — low expectations. What kinds of solutions are out there? How can we activate systems to bring solutions to bear? Can disabled people ever achieve equality in a capitalist system?

PsychologyWhat is ableism? Is it a phobia? Why are able-bodied people so sure that being disabled is a very bad thing? Why do some of them think that they would rather be dead than be disabled? How does the psychology of ableism drive public opinion? How does psychology drive politics? Law?

Literature, Performing Arts and Culture – What have disabled people written or produced about life, thriving? What do they write or produce about death and suicide? What mistakes do able-bodied writers and film-makers keep making when they try to represent disabled realities? Who are the great disabled writers and creators? (We hope to have many artists, writers and producers of disability culture contributing to this section!)

Activism – Videos, webinars, podcasts, links to campaigns and literature from the front lines.

Children’s Section – What do disabled children get to read, and is it relevant to their lives? How do children learn about disabilities in school and in their community libraries? Do they get to see disabled children thriving? How do they learn about death and dying? And so many other questions … !

Your thoughts matter! Share them here.