The adequacy of Canada's guidelines for the ethical treatment of research subjects is being reexamined. Health Canada, the National Council on Ethics in Human Research and the newly formed Interagency Advisory Panel on Research Ethics have all taken steps to consider criticisms and concerns.
"It is unclear what all this activity will mean," said CAUT executive director James Turk. "But there is significant pressure to strengthen the Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans - the governing policy in Canada."
To assist CAUT play a leading role in these discussions, a 10-member research ethics advisory group has been created.
Members are: John Baker, professor of philosophy, University of Calgary; Patricia Baker, associate professor of sociology/anthropology and women's studies, Mount Saint Vincent University; Jocelyn Downie, director of the Health Law Institute and associate professor of law and medicine, Dalhousie University; Michael McDonald, professor of philosophy and director of the UBC Centre for Applied Ethics; Pat O'Neill, professor and acting head of psychology, Acadia University; Barrie Ratcliffe, retired professor of history, Laval University; David Reid, professor and chair of biological sciences, University of Calgary; Sandra Taylor, associate professor of medicine and director of the Office of Bioethics, Queen's University; Jon Thompson, professor and chair of mathematics and statistics, University of New Brunswick; and, Charles Weijer, associate professor of medicine, department of bioethics, Dalhousie University.