Medically-assisted suicide recommended to another Canadian Armed Forces member

"I was kinda hoping they would help me with my transition out of the military," the actively-serving Canadian Forces member told podcast host and veterans advocate Mark Meincke.

A second member of the Canadian Forces has reportedly been offered so-called medical assistance in dying (MAID) by a Veterans Affairs caseworker after asking for help for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the National Post reported. 

The Canadian Forces member told his story on Wednesday's episode of Operation Tango Romeo, a "Trauma Recovery Podcast for #Military, #Veterans, #First Responders, and their families," during which he referred to himself by the pseudonym "Bruce" as he is still in active service and fears retaliation.

"I had been suffering from PTSD and recently had a lot of suicidal thoughts," Bruce told podcast host Mark Meincke, a former Canadian soldier and veterans advocate. 

Bruce explains that upon receiving a call from a caseworker at Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC), he was "kinda hoping they would help me with my transition out of the military, help me find new doctors once I get out, and assist me with any other kind of claims I might have."

"I wasn’t expecting them to let me know 'Hey, we had recently won litigation to assist members with MAID, and you know that’s always an option,'" an audibly upset Bruce told Meincke.

"I was a little disturbed that if they had mentioned that to somebody else that was even worse off than I was, that could’ve been that little push over the edge," he added.

This is the second such story to come to light about VAC caseworkers recommending MAID unprompted to a member of the Canadian Forces.

In August of this year, it came to light that a Canadian Forces veteran had been offered MAID by a caseworker twice after seeking help for PTSD and traumatic brain injury.

The unnamed veteran was allegedly told that MAID was a better alternative to "blowing your brains out."

This story forced Trudeau to make a statement calling the recommendation "unacceptable," declaring at the time that "there is a full investigation going on as to how that happened, and we are going to ensure it never happens again."

The House veterans affairs committee is due to discuss in what capacity MAID should be offered to veterans on Thursday afternoon. 

Bruce lamented the fact that he didn't come forward sooner about the incident, which took place in 2021.

"I wish I had said something earlier, because maybe that would’ve put a stop to it right then and there."

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