On Tuesday, May 9th, the Law Commission of Ontario (LCO) released a major new report on Indigenous health law: The Last Stages of Life for First Nation, Métis and Inuit Peoples: Preliminary Recommendations for Law Reform.

The project is guided by recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. The LCO sought respectful relations based on the revitalization of Indigenous traditions and laws. Our approach was to listen and learn how different Indigenous communities live “the last stages of life” through their experiences, values, culture, practices, and traditional laws.

The report identifies 36 “promising directions for future law reform conversations,” including:

  • The need to reconceive health care consent, capacity, and substitute decision-making;
  • The impact of jurisdiction on Jordan’s Principle and equitable access to health care;
  • Facilitating traditional practices governing death in the home and natural burials;
  • Measuring health care performance with Indigenous practices and values;
  • Better supporting Indigenous health professionals, family members, and caregivers in community; and
  • Access to Indigenous hospices in community.

The LCO committed to Indigenous engagement as a distinct but complimentary part of our Last Stages of Life Project.

More information about the project is available on the LCO’s Indigenous Last Stages of Life project page, available here.