The federal government wants four more months to change Canada’s assisted suicide rules to comply with a Quebec court decision that came down in September that said the existing regulations are too restrictive.

In a joint statement released by Justice Minister David Lametti and Health Minister Patty Hajdu late in the afternoon of Feb. 17, the ministers said a four-month extension would allow the government to better address the “complex and deeply personal issue.”

“We recognize that medical assistance in dying is a complex and deeply personal issue. The high level of engagement during the January 2020 online public consultations—which received nearly 300,000 responses—is a strong demonstration of the importance of this issue for Canadians,” the statement from the ministers said, adding that “we remain committed to responding to the Court’s ruling as quickly as possible.”

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