Short name: oppose legalized euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide
Sponsor: David Rolde,
Seeking review and feedback from Plaftorm Committee (if it is reconvened), Legislative Committee, Membership Committee (because this relates to issues of disabled people and other diverse populations), GRP local chapters, Adcom, Statecom members
This proposal is for the GRP to oppose the legalization of euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide. Medical professionals should not be killing people or prescribing death.
Euthanasia and/or doctor-assisted suicide has been legalized in several countries in Europe (e.g. The Netherlands and Belgium), in several U.S. states (e.g., Oregon, Washington and California) and in Canada. This has resulted in patients being encouraged to kill themselves or be euthanized by healthcare workers and insurance companies.
In Oregon and California, cancer patients have received letters from their insurance companies not only denying coverage for treatments prescribed by their doctors, but also specifically informing them that assisted death would be covered. Even without legalized assisted suicide, disabled people seeking healthcare often have to deal with healthcare workers who say that they would’t want to live with that disability (e.g., quadriplegia). With legalized euthanasia and assisted suicide, healthcare professionals sometimes actually recommend and offer assisted death to disabled and elderly people who present with even minor and treatable health conditions, and in some cases people have been euthanized against their will. In the Netherlands and Belgium the situation has progressed to the point that euthanasia is sometimes being prescribed for young people for post-traumatic stress and depression.
In the U.S. we do not have good health care available to everyone. We need to provide universal free good healthcare, not provide assisted suicide and euthanasia. I n 2012 Massachusetts voters defeated a statewide ballot question that would have legalized doctor-assisted suicide. The ballot question was defeated by voters in municipalities with a high proportion of low-income and non-white people. National disability rights groups such as ADAPT and The Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund oppose legalizing assisted suicide. Single-issue orgs in opposition to assisted suicide include the national group Not Dead Yet and the Massachusetts-based group Second Thoughts which are both led by disability rights activists. Despite the defeat of the ballot question in Massachusetts in 2012, there is a new bill before the Massachusetts state legislature every year to try to legalize assisted suicide. Disability rights activists and other progressive activists have to testify against the bill every year. This year assisted suicide was legalized in New Jersey and in Maine last week.
This year for the first time the majority of legislators on the statehouse committee vetting the assisted suicide bill are proponents of the bill. We really need the Green-Rainbow Party to be active in the opposition in order to defeat the bill this year. The American Medical Association is still opposed to assisted suicide. Doctors and other healthcare workers are supposed to help people live not kill people. Euthanasia and assisted suicide violate the hippocratic oath.
Assisted suicide and euthanasia are a murderous policy against disabled people, elderly people (There is a high rate of elder abuse in Massachusetts), poor people and people of colonized and oppressed nationalities (non-white people). Their lives are not valued. We must value their lives and provide them with good health care, housing, help to take care of themselves and everything they need to live comfortably and happily.
1.The Green-Rainbow Party of Massachusetts will take a position in opposition to legalized doctor-assisted suicide and euthanasia. 2. GRP will add this position to our Party Agenda and/or to future platform documents
2. GRP will oppose bills at the Massachusetts statehouse that would legalize doctor-assisted suicide and/or euthanasia this year (2019) and in future years.
3. GRP will submit a proposal this year (2019) to amend the GPUS Platform to oppose doctor-assisted suicide and euthanasia.
Implementation: reconvened Platform Committee, Legislative Committee, GRP rep(s) to GPUS Platform Committee, Adcom
possibility of contributing up to a few hundred dollars towards written material and forums in opposition to assisted suicide to be co-sponsored by GRP and other orgs working to oppose legalization of assisted suicide in Massachusetts. But we could implement the proposal without this spending.