The British Humanist Association (BHA) has welcomed a new Bill that seeks to legalise assisted dying in Scotland for terminally people, or those who are permanently physically incapacitated or progressive degenerative conditions and their lives have become intolerable. The ‘End of Life Choices (Scotland)’ Bill has been introduced into the Scottish Parliament by independent MSP Margo Macdonald, who herself has Parkinson’s disease.
Naomi Phillips, BHA Head of Public Affairs, commented, ‘Being able to die, with dignity, in a manner of our choosing must be understood to be a fundamental human right. It is through legalisation that we can ensure strict legal safeguards are in place; safeguards such as are set out in this Bill. This would increase autonomy by ensuring that people are free from coercion and so are empowered to make rational choices over their end-of-life care, including the choice to have an assisted death if they want.’
‘Further, we believe that legalisation, with strict safeguards in place, is ethically far preferable than our present law and would be by far the best way to protect vulnerable people. We want to see a reformed law throughout the UK.’
For any further questions or information, please contact Naomi Phillips on 020 7079 3585.
The British Humanist Association is the national charity representing and supporting the interests of ethically concerned, non-religious people in the UK.