Hope Ireland welcomes the Justice Committee’s rejection of euthanasia bill
Advocates against euthanasia and assisted suicide reminded the Committee that the World Medical Association is firmly opposed to euthanasia and assisted suicide, and no professional medical body in Ireland supports a change to the law in this area
This bill posed a threat to the right to life of certain categories of people, with the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission raising their concerns with the Committee.
In its report, the Committee noted that:
- Nearly all medical stakeholders (i.e. professional medical bodies in the areas of palliative care and mental health) were against the Bill. A majority of individual medical submissions were also against the Bill.
A point that was “repeated frequently throughout submissions in all categories was concern that this Bill could result in abuse of the sick and vulnerable, who may perceive themselves to be a burden on their family and feel pressured into opting for assisted dying.”
- In some submissions “elderly people expressed their personal dismay, as they felt that after working hard all of their lives, the prospect of this Bill being passed made them feel as if society was demonstrating that they were of little value“
It is not compassionate healthcare to remove the protection of the law from older people, people with terminal illnesses, and people with disabilities, who may feel pressured to end their lives for fear of being a burden.