A cancer-stricken B.C. Jehovah’s Witness girl who’s fighting a blood transfusion order will appear in an Ontario court on Tuesday.
The girl had a tumor surgically removed from her leg and then went through several rounds of chemotherapy, which suppresses the production of red blood cells.
On April 11, a B.C. judge ordered the girl receive any medically-ordered transfusion, which goes against her religious beliefs.
B.C. law requires a person be at least 19 years old before they are allowed to refuse medical treatment.
Shane Brady, the family’s lawyer, said this about the ruling: “The family is disappointed because the way they see the issue is that the question is: Can a capable person of any age make a decision?
“And (while) they appreciate the justice has looked at the matter, there, of course, is a difference of view in terms of the law.”
The girl and her family — who cannot be named — travelled to Toronto recently.
They have launched an action in Ontario Superior Court to challenge the B.C. ruling.
B.C. child care authorities say the girl urgently needs a transfusion.
“Life and safety is at stake here — and we need to make sure that she’s going to be safe,” said Theresa Lumsdon of B.C.’s ministry of children and family development.
While Brady didn’t return phone calls from CTV News Toronto, he did send out a fax saying reports the girl needed an urgent transfusion were “grossly unfounded.”
He said B.C. child care officials knew the family was seeking a second medical opinion in Toronto at the Hospital for Sick Children. They hope to find an alternative treatment to a blood transfusion.
However, they left when the hospital urged them to return to B.C. for treatment, CTV News Toronto’s Janice Golding reported.
The girl and her parents were last seen in a west Toronto neighborhood.
Brady told The Canadian Press that authorities such as the Children’s Aid Society knew his client’s whereabouts.
There is an apprehension order issued by the B.C. courts which remains on police computers, but Toronto police have said they aren’t actively seeking the girl.
Brady said the girl and her parents will be in court Tuesday.
With a report from CTV News Toronto’s Janice Golding and files from The Canadian Press