NewsTalk ZB 23 June 2015
Lecretia Seales’ widower is hopeful politicians will look into the issue of voluntary euthanasia.
Matt Vickers has been among those who’ve presented an over 8000 signature petition to parliament today calling for a formal inquiry in current laws around assisted deaths
He’s is confident MPs will heed the petition, and also the comments from the Courts, that it is a matter for Parliament.
Family First spokesman Bob McCoskrie, however, is urging caution, particularly around claims a law change would allow choice in the right to die.
“What the international research clearly shows is that a lot of euthanasia happens without consent, and without choice and that should disturb all of us,” he said.
Euthanasia supporters present petition to Parliament
NZ Herald 23 June 2015
Supporters of voluntary euthanasia, including the husband of the late Lecretia Seales, have presented a petition to Parliament today.
Matt Vickers attended the Voluntary Euthanasia Society’s presentation of the petition, which had some 9000 signatures and called on lawmakers to renew discussion about the right to die.
“Obviously when we got the ruling from the judge…he was quite clear that it was for Parliament to change and that there was good reason for them to do so,” Mr Vickers said.
“My wife showed a lot of courage taking this to the courts. As a result of that we built up a huge groundswell of support across New Zealand.”
Family First New Zealand director Bob McCoskrie said he was concerned the “right to die” would become a “duty to die” for vulnerable people including the elderly and disabled.
Lecretia Seales was unsuccessful in seeking a High Court ruling that would let her doctor help her die without criminal prosecution.
Voluntary euthanasia petition presented to Parliament
Stuff co.nz 23 June 2015
A voluntary euthanasia petition presented at Parliament has garnered cross-party support.
The petition was delivered to MPs on Tuesday by former Labour MP Maryan Street, who proposed and championed the End-of-Life Choice Bill, and Matt Vickers, the husband of Lecretia Seales, who died of a brain tumour on the same day she lost her High Court bid to choose to die.
Vickers, in his first public appearance since his wife’s funeral earlier this month, said the issue was so important to his wife that she’d “spent her final days taking up a court action”.
Family First spokesman Bob McCoskrie said the protesters were concerned voluntary euthanasia would turn a right to die into a “duty to die”.
No law would ever be able to protect the most vulnerable people in society when it comes to voluntary euthanasia, he said.
The increase in this year’s Budget for palliative care was the right move and reflected a desire to improve the quality of care for those facing terminal illnesses – not the premature ending of their life, McCoskrie said.
Husband calls for ‘right to die’ debate
Radio NZ News 23 June 2015
Matt Vickers’s wife, Lecretia Seales, died earlier this month only hours after learning her High Court fight for the right to die on her terms had failed.
Mr Vickers and the former Labour MP Maryan Street – who in 2013 removed her End of Life Choice Bill from the private member’s ballot – today presented the Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway with a petition signed by 8975 people calling for Parliament to consider the issue.
Ms Seales had sought clarification on whether it would be an offence under the Crimes Act for her doctor to be able to help her die, and whether a ban on assisted dying contravened her human rights under the Bill of Rights Act.
Family First national director Bob McCoskrie said he did not believe the petition represented the will of the public, and that politicians had already considered the issue.
“There’s the danger that disabled people, elderly people, people who are mentally unwell, people under financial pressure, people who just feel like they’re burden – it won’t be about a right to die, it’ll become a duty to die,” he said.
“That becomes a concern.”
There was “overwhelming” evidence from the United States, Belgium, and the Netherlands that such things had happened, Mr McCoskrie said.
“We did away with the death penalty because we were concerned that we might get it wrong and I think that’s the same reason for staying clear of decriminalising euthanasia – what if we get it wrong, what if the right to die becomes a duty to die.”
Lecretia Seales’ husband reignites euthanasia debate
Radio NZ 23 June 2015
LISTEN HERE: http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/201759604
Euthanasia debate looking likely for Parliament
NewsTalk ZB 24 June 2015
A petition’s gone to Parliament formally calling for such a step to be taken.
Lecretia Seales’ widower Matt Vickers was among those who presented an over 8000 signature petition to parliament yesterday calling for a formal inquiry in current laws around assisted deaths.
Justice Minister Amy Adams said the Government’s got no issues with the committee looking into that matter should it choose to.
She said “the Select Committee will make it’s own determination, but the government has made it quite clear that we’re certainly not going to try and direct our members one way or the other.”
“As the Minister responsible for this area I’m certainly comfortable with having an enquiry.”
ACT Leader David Seymour’s presenting his international evidence to support his push for legal euthanasia.
He’s come up against lobby group Family First, who are opposing any move for a law change.
Spokesman Bob McCoskrie said international research clearly shows a lot of euthanasia happens without consent and without choice.
NewsTalk ZB 23 June 2015