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We Need Improved Palliative Care – Not Kill

We Need Improved Palliative Care – Not Legalised Killing

Christian Heritage NZ today called for a national palliative care policy. CHNZ leader Ewen McQueen said a national policy was needed both to ensure consistent standards of care across the country and to improve the support for families caring for someone who was terminally ill. He said the Lesley Martin case in Wanganui demonstrated that more help and support was needed for caregivers in particular. Said Mr McQueen,

“ No one should be left on their own to cope with caring for a terminally ill relative at home. We need to ensure there is adequate support for people in such situations.
If any public policy change comes out of this particular case it should be better care and support for the terminally ill and their families – not a law change to legalise the killing of the terminally ill. “

The CHNZ leader said the law must continue to affirm the sanctity of human life. He stated that we cannot afford to ignore the clear lessons of history as to what happens when euthanasia finds a foothold in a culture. He noted that one medical expert involved in the war crimes trials in Nuremberg after World War Two, later wrote – “Whatever proportions these crimes finally assumed….it started with the acceptance of the attitude, basic in the euthanasia movement, that there is such a thing as life not worthy to be lived.” (Dr L. Alexander, New England Journal of Medicine, Vol 241, July 1949).

Mr McQueen stated,

“ Once public policy supports the idea that there is such a thing as a life not worthy to be lived, we place our society in a very dangerous position.”

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