The Assisted Suicide Rate in Canada is 4.45 times the Firearms Suicide Rate in the United States

Jul 1, 2023 | Suicide

While there were about 3,839 suicides per year in Canada in 2020, there were 13,500 assisted suicides in Canada in 2022. With a population of about 38.25 million people, that implies an assisted suicide rate of 35.294 per 100,000 people. The total suicide rate is about 45.

The assisted suicide rate in Canada in 2022 is about 4.45 times the firearms suicide rate in the US in 2021 (the latest year for both numbers). Even if you take Canada’s assisted suicide rate in 2021, when the program was ramping up, there were 10,500 assisted suicides, for a rate of 27.5 per 100,000 people. That is 3.46 times the US firearm suicide rate. 

When the statistics Canada data on suicides comes out for 2021 and 2022, it will be interesting to see if suicides in Canada decline as the assisted suicide rate increases.

Apparently, some of the people who are opting for assisted suicide are those who aren’t getting the medical care that they need in Canada.

A quadriplegic woman in Bowmanville, Ont., has applied for medical assistance in dying (MAID), saying it’s easier to access than the support services she needs to live her life comfortably.

Rose Finlay, 33, has been a full-time wheelchair user since a diving accident when she was 17.

But for the past year, she says, she’s been without the reliable daily support she needs. Without that support, which includes bathroom assistance, she suffers from recurring urinary tract and kidney infections. . . .

“That tells me that our government is not prioritizing the lives of disabled people and that it is easier to let disabled people go than it is to actually give them the assistance that they need,” Finlay said. . . .

Tyler Cheese, “Quadriplegic Ontario woman considers medically assisted dying because of long ODSP wait times: Rose Finlay says it’s easier to access MAID than the support services she needs,” CBC News, June 22, 2023.

Interestingly, people seem to accept Euthanasia even as they oppose suicides via other methods, such as firearms.