Note as of May 30, 2015: I wrote the original press release (below) and presented it to the media (on the radio too) at the time. I have an update of my views on this subject here. I don’t want to be part of a dialectic where I’m used naively to blindly legitimize organ donation as if there are no problems with it, but at least we addressed one side of it.
Ontario Libertarian Party
Attention News/Assignment Editors:
Libertarian Party: Ontario Organ Donation Bill Seeks Government Ownership of your Body
February 18, 2006 – Toronto, Ontario.
Ontario M.P.P. Peter Kormos has introduced Bill 61, which seeks to amend the Trillium Gift of Life Network Act in order to allow “presumed consent” for organ donations. According to the bill’s explanatory note, the “purpose of the Bill is to ensure that upon the death of a person, tissue from the person’s body may be removed and made available for transplant into another person’s body and that this may be done without the consent of the person from whom the tissue is removed.”
Trillium Gift of Life Network is a government monopoly that controls organ donation in Ontario. This agency’s restrictions follow a strict socialist ideology that weeds out non-altruistic motives by potential living donors. For instance, directed-donation by living donors is forbidden except among family and friends. As a result, the availability of organs from living donors does not meet the critical needs of more than 1800 Ontarians on transplant waiting lists.
Bill 61 seeks to solve this government-created shortage by using the force of law to harvest organs from any deceased person who has not stated an objection. Various parties in the Ontario Legislature seek to force “solutions”, whether it is by declaring government ownership of peoples’ dead bodies or by forcing them to sign statements.
Libertarians believe that a person owns his or her own life and body. The Ontario Libertarian Party rejects Bill 61 as a shameful violation of personal freedom and self-ownership. We reject the belief held by Peter Kormos and other legislators, that the government owns the bodies of Ontarians, or that the government has the right to decide what happens to our bodies after death. The Libertarian Party utterly rejects the concept of “presumed consent” for organ donation. Nobody has a right to take organs and tissues unless explicit consent is given.
Furthermore, the government has no right to require statements or collect information on the various reasons – religious, philosophical or otherwise – that people may have for not donating their organs.
In fact, there should be complete freedom for Ontarians to make economic and charitable arrangements concerning what happens to their organs while they are alive and after they are dead. Freedom involves economic incentives, choice and initiative, whereas government solutions involve confiscation, restrictions and threats of punishment.
The Libertarian Party calls for the rejection of Bill 61 and for the abolition of the original Act.
Learn more about the Ontario Libertarian Party:
Visit www.libertarian.on.ca or . . .