Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Disabled people petition Parliament to amend euthanasia bill

For immediate release


Representatives from Euthanasia-Free NZ, the disability advocacy group Not Yet Dead Yet Aotearoa and the Wellington disability community are presenting a petition to Parliament ahead of the debate on Part 4 of the End of Life Choice Bill.later today.

More than 2,600 people have signed the petition, which has been online for only five days and available at three recent public talks on euthanasia.

The petition requests that Parliament provides disabled people and others the choice to receive services only from health professionals who don't engage in 'assisted dying'.

"We launched this petition in response to concerns by disabled and elderly people who say they would feel very vulnerable if this Bill were to become law," says Renée Joubert, Executive Officer of Euthanasia-Free NZ.

"This Bill still targets disabled people. A terminally ill person would be eligible to receive a lethal dose under this Bill only if they are also in 'an advanced state of irreversible decline in physical capability'. The phrase 'decline in physical capability' means 'physical disability'.

To provide euthanasia or assisted suicide, a health professional would have to agree with a person that their life is not worth living. It's then very easy for the same health professional to judge the lives of other people with disabilities as not worth living either.

"Many disabled and elderly people, and their loved ones, feel that they cannot trust a doctor or nurse who intentionally ends the lives of some of their patients. They are concerned that a health professional who makes the judgement that some patients' lives are not worth living might not give them the level of care that they need."

Disabled people are already at risk of having judgements made about the quality and dignity of their lives.

"Not Dead Yet Aotearoa strongly supports this petition", says convener Wendi Wicks. "Given the negative judgements around our lives, disabled people need to have trust in our healthcare providers not to make these negative judgements."

"We are delighted that MP Chris Penk is proposing Supplementary Order Paper 381 in response to this petition," says Ms Joubert. "The amendment would stipulate that "a consumer has the right to request and receive services only from a provider who does not provide services authorised by the End of Life Choice Act 2017."

The petition will be presented outside Parliament at 11.45 am today.

Petition to the House of Representatives (Parliament)

Please amend the End of Life Choice Bill to provide disabled people and others the choice to receive services only from health professionals

who don’t engage in 'assisted dying'*.

If such an amendment were to be absent from the final version of the Bill, please vote against this Bill at its Third Reading.

* 'Assisted dying' means administering a lethal dose with the intention of hastening a person's death, or giving a person a lethal dose to self-administer.

Explanation: David Seymour claims that it's possible to provide both choice to those who want 'assisted dying'* and at the same time, protection for those who want nothing to do with it.

But we think that the End of Life Choice Bill, as currently amended, would not protect disabled people who want nothing to do with 'assisted dying' at that time.

This Bill’s eligibility criteria are all about disability. A terminally ill person would be eligible only if they also have "an irreversible decline in physical capability" – that is, a disability.

To provide euthanasia or assisted suicide, a health professional would have to agree with a person that their life is not worth living. It's then very easy for the same health professional to judge the lives of other people with disabilities as not worth living either. Such judgements may influence the health professional’s clinical decisions and the quality of care they would give us and our loved ones.

Those of us with disabilities are particularly at risk of having judgements made about the quality and dignity of our lives. We often hear comments from the able-bodied majority such as, "I would rather be dead than be like you," or that it is undignified to need assistance with daily living. Many of us have been ignored, patronised, excluded, neglected or abused by able-bodied people.

We want the option for ourselves, our loved ones, and disabled people in general, to receive services only from doctors and nurses who have not engaged in any part of an 'assisted dying'* process under this Bill. We put more trust in such health professionals.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Whakaari / White Island Eruption: Body recovery operation

The NZ Defence Force recovered the bodies of six people who tragically died in Monday’s eruption on Whakaari/White Island and will support efforts to recover the bodies of two others in the hope there is resolution for those families. .. More>>

 
 

Gordon Campbell: On Welfare Vs Infrastructure Spending

If New Zealand has a pressing need to stimulate its flagging economy, it seems very weird that the government is choosing a $12 billion package of infrastructure spending – mainly on road and rail – that by definition, will take a very long time to deliver their stimulatory benefits ... More>>

New Reports: "Immediate Commitment To Doing Justice Differently"

Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and Te Tangi o te Manawanui: Recommendations for Reform from the Chief Victims Advisor. Both recommend a fresh approach to the way criminal justice has been approached... More>>

ALSO:

"Heart-Breaking And Confronting": Surgical Mesh Restorative Justice Report

Minister Genter: “People have talked about losing the life they had enjoyed before surgical mesh harmed them – the loss of a steady job, the ability to exercise, a loving relationship in some cases. Others described the chronic pain they experienced..." More>>

ALSO:

Law Foundation: Government Decryption Powers Must Respect Privacy

The power of government to order users and companies to decrypt encrypted data and devices needs stronger privacy protections and additional safeguards, according to a study published by researchers at the University of Waikato. More>>

Latest 'Discussion Doc': National On Healthcare

National has today released our eighth Discussion Document which focusses on health and outlines a range of policies which will enable more Kiwis to access high-quality healthcare, Leader of the Opposition Simon Bridges says. More>>

ALSO:

Select Committee Report: Combatting Foreign Election Interference

MPs have finally delivered their recommendations to combat foreign interference in elections in a long awaited and much delayed report. More>>

Mosque Attacks: Names Of Arresting Officers Released

Police are now in the position to name the two officers involved in the arrest of the alleged gunman responsible for the attacks on the Al Noor and Linwood Mosques on March 15. More>>

Big, Bold, Permanent Change Needed: Children's Commissioner On 2019 Child Poverty Monitor

“I want to see family incomes dramatically raised by increasing benefits and making the minimum wage a living wage. And the Government needs to move much faster at increasing the supply of social housing..." More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels