On Wednesday, March 8 Bill S-201, the Genetic Non-discrimination Act PASSED 3rd reading in the House of Commons!
Canadians became closer to being able to make informed decisions about genetic tests without fear. Bill S-201 passed the 3rd reading in the House of Commons. The Bill still needs to go back to the Senate but all indications are that it will be supported. After several attempts by the Liberal Justice Minister to gut the Bill through amendments, it passed in its entirety. The Bill includes Pan-Canada legislation that makes it a criminal act to discriminate against a person based on their genetic test information, as well as amendments to the Canada Labour Code and amendments to the Canadian Human Rights Act. The bill passed by a free vote (in which MPs are allowed to vote according to their own personal conscience rather than according to an official party line) with an overwhelming majority of 222-60. This is a historic development, as Canada is the only G8 country without this type of legislation.