Jersey approves plans for assisted dying

by 24britishtvMay 23, 2024, 2 p.m. 30
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Members of the States Assembly voted 32 to 14 in favour of introducing the law for people with fewer than six months to live, or 12 months for those with a neurodegenerative condition.

It will, however, remain illegal for those with incurable medical conditions who experience “unbearable suffering” to end their lives legally.

The law mirrors those in Australia, New Zealand and a number of US states, which allow for terminally ill adults with mental capacity to make the decision to end their lives.

The law could be drafted in about 18 months, followed by a debate at the end of next year.

​Chief Minister, Deputy Lyndon Farnham, said: “The States Assembly decision to approve assisted dying is designed to assist terminally ill islanders and their families, giving them autonomy over their end-of-life choices. Alongside this, we have agreed that robust safeguards will be enshrined in law.

“Once the new legislation is drafted, which is expected to take up to 18 months, the States will debate the draft law and, if it is approved, assisted dying could take in place in Jersey from 2027.”

Jennifer Bridge, leader of the Jersey Assisted Dying Action Group, said: “Without offering our citizens this choice, many do suffer despite receiving excellent palliative care, some take their own lives and those with financial means may take the loneliest journey of their life and travel alone to Dignitas.

“I hope States members will continue to give their support to this reform because the vast majority of us agree that an assisted dying law would be safer and kinder than the status quo.”

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