The pressure to legalise assisted suicide grows ever stronger and the assisted suicide lobby is stepping up its activity once more. Whilst every attempt to change the law in recent years has been defeated, the pressure from pro-assisted suicide campaigners is relentless. Having failed to use the courts to force Parliament to act, and seen the Government shutdown its latest calls to issue a review of the law on assisted suicide, campaigners are redoubling their efforts to persuade MPs of the merits of their cause.
Both individual MPs and Government need to firmly resist demands for the law to change or for there to be any weakening of current provisions which protect the vulnerable from harm at the end of life.
At this crucial moment, we’re asking for your help to counter this growing threat.
It is vital that MPs hear from constituents like you who are opposed to assisted suicide and euthanasia. To help counter the pressure being put on MPs to support a either a review of the existing law or for the law to be changed, we're asking you to stand with us and let your MP know why changing the law would be dangerous and unsafe, with tragic consequences for the vulnerable.
Please do the following two things:
- Please write to your MP, using your own words to both express your concerns that changing the law would be dangerous and unsafe, and to ask your MP to tell you their view on any change to the law. Please make use of the ‘Points to Make’ information below.
- Please let us know how your MP responds to your message. This will be hugely beneficial as we plan for any possible attempt to change the law in Parliament.
Points to make:
Below you'll find some suggested points to make. Please use your own words as this will carry far more weight.
- Let your MP know that the issue of assisted suicide is one of great concern to you personally. If possible, try to add context to the letter – for example, you might have experience of caring for a relative or close friend, or may yourself be ill or otherwise vulnerable and therefore particularly aware of or sensitive to the consequences of changing the law.
- Ask your MP to vote against any legislation which may be brought forward at Westminster.
- Ask your MP what their position is on assisted suicide; if it is true for you, you might like to say that your MP’s view may determine how you vote in future elections.
- Ask your MP to reject any move towards reviewing the current law because the law as it stands is working.
- Note that, once a state-sanctioned means of ending life becomes a legal option, pressure would inevitably fall on the most vulnerable in our society (including the elderly, disabled and frail) to end their lives to avoid being a burden on family, friends and caregivers. A so-called ‘right to die’ could quickly become a duty to die for many vulnerable people.
- Point out that there is no such thing as a safe assisted suicide law. In places where assisted suicide and euthanasia are legal, there's clear evidence of the law being incrementally extended, with rising numbers of deaths and changes to the eligibility criteria and safeguards.
- Say you believe the focus should be on improving investment in the hospice sector and palliative care (which tackles and alleviates many of the factors which might lead someone to consider ending their life prematurely) so everyone can access support when they need to.
- Say you are concerned that any change in the law would fundamentally alter the trust between doctors and their patients.