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On December 4, 2009, the Quebec National Assembly unanimously adopted a motion creating a special parliamentary committee to examine the question of dying with dignity. The four political parties represented in the Assembly at that time (the Quebec Liberal Party, the Parti Québécois, Action Démocratique du Québec and Québec Solidaire) approved a motion that would lead to extensive public consultations on end-of-life issues, including palliative care, living wills and, most contentiously, the difficult issue of euthanasia. The result was a rewarding experience for all concerned – parliamentarians, the media and the general public, as citizens and representatives of civil society came forward to comment on one of life’s most emotionally charged moments and to explore how death and dying are dealt with in our modern world.

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