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'Assisted suicide in one area of the UK would harm UK society as a whole'—CARE

Assisted Suicide
29 February 2024
Carer hands holding frail palliative care care home nursing

CARE has warned that assisted suicide would "damage UK society as a whole" as MPs suggest a change is more likely in some areas.

A report from Westminster's Health and Social Care Committee stresses the need for UK ministers to consider what a change in one area of the UK will mean for other areas and notes the inadequacy of palliative care.

Responding to the report this morning, CARE's Director of Advocacy and Policy, Louise Davies MBE, said:

“We believe that assisted suicide is not something that should be countenanced in any area of the UK. Evidence from other jurisdictions paints a troubling picture. In Canada, for example, marginalised people feel forced to end their lives because they cannot access the services they need to live. And this has become accepted. Assisted suicide legislation in the UK would lead to the same profound injustices, and damage UK society as a whole.

"The cross-border effects of an assisted suicide have not been considered. We would ask how the safety of patients in one area, treated under very different ethical guidelines, could be maintained when they are able to relocate to another area and access assisted death? A law change in Scotland, for example, would create huge challenges for suicide prevention in England. Scotland may also see an influx of people, compounding pressure on its NHS.

“There are very good reasons why no area of the UK has not legislated for assisted suicide. Safeguards always fail: doctors cannot detect the subtle signs of coercion, and may miss them altogether. The law could become more permissive over time: activists would demand assisted suicide for people who don’t have a terminal illness before long. The current approach is best, and consistency is best. We would urge politicians to say no."


Notes for Editors

Christian Action Research and Education (CARE) is a social policy charity, bringing Christian insight to the policies and laws that affect our lives.

A high quality image of our spokesperson is available on request. For more information, or to request an interview, email

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Assisted Suicide

Where assisted suicide is legal, it makes vulnerable people feel like a burden. CARE works to uphold laws that protect those people, and to assist them to live—not to commit suicide.

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