You may have seen that Dignity in Dying are doing a very big push nationwide to get people to email their candidates to ask them whether would support moves in the next Parliament to introduce assisted suicide.
We need to ensure that candidates receive as many emails from us showing that there is a large part of the population that support their MP voting against any future Bills on assisted suicide.
So please to take 5-minutes out of your schedule today to email your candidates. We have put together draft text below which you are welcome to use in your email to candidates. Their individual email addresses can be found by visiting this website – https://whocanivotefor.co.uk/ – and typing in your postcode.
As you know in 2015 Parliament voted overwhelmingly (330:118) against legalising assisted suicide. As a candidate seeking election to Parliament, I would like to know whether you would vote against any future Bills seeking to introduce assisted suicide?
In 2015, the defeat in the House of Commons was joined by the voting down of similar attempts to introduce assisted suicide in both Scotland and Wales. In Scotland MSPs voted down Green MSP Patrick Harvie’s assisted suicide bill by 82 votes to 16. Similarly in Wales a proposal on the principle of assisted suicide was defeated after just 12 AMs supported it. By contrast, 21 AMs – almost twice the number in favour – voted against it, whilst 20 abstained.
In the year since since the defeat of the Marris assisted suicide Bill, the British Medical Association has also voted 195 to 115 to maintain its opposition to assisted suicide.
Their continued opposition places them amongst a number of prominent voices in the disability rights community who continue their resistance to introducing assisted suicide including Baroness Campbell of Surbiton, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and the actress and activist Liz Carr. We have also seen continued positions of opposition from the Royal Colleges of Physicians, Surgeons, and General Practitioners, the British Medical Association (which has recently voted to maintain its opposition to assisted suicide), the Association of Palliative Medicine, and many others.
Care Not Killing have also put together some excellent briefing that you may want to share in your emails to candidates.
- Briefing on why it was right to reject the Marris Bill
- Briefing on why Oregon’s example should not be followed
You can also review how MPs that were sitting in the last Parliament voted on the Marris assisted suicide Bill by clicking here.
Please do let us know if you hear back from your candidate as we need to know their position on this – please forward responses onto email@example.com.