Significant changes to End of Life Choice Bill proposed by David Seymour

By December 17, 2018 Recent News

Stuff 14 December 2018
Family First Comment: David Seymour 1st Rdg:
“There are those in Parl’t who say its worst bill they’ve encountered. I’ve challenged them privately, they know they couldn’t name better one. This bill’s been in public domain since Sep 2015, no critic has laid glove on any aspect..”

Significant changes to the End of Life Choice Bill have been proposed by Act MP David Seymour.

The bill’s strongest supporter in Parliament has suggested limiting legalised euthanasia solely to cases of terminal illness.

He has sought to exclude mental illness and disability from the bill’s provisions, send it to public referendum, and incorporate aspects of a palliative care bill drafted by his loudest critic, National MP Maggie Barry.

Seymour’s concessions are a bid to earn votes from his parliamentary colleagues and allay concerns among the 37,000 who submitted on the End of Life Choice Bill.

The suggested narrowing has drawn both praise and ire – often in equal measure – from advocates and opponents of the prospective law.

The proposed alterations had been met with intrigue by some anti-euthanasia groups including Family First NZ and Right to Life, with Family First national director Bob McCoskrie urging politicians to “move on”.

“[Seymour’s] latest statements should be an indication to politicians that they should give New Zealanders a real Christmas present and move on from the current political push for assisted suicide, and focus on what New Zealanders really need and want – a focus on providing the very best palliative care and support for vulnerable people.”

Euthanasia: Lobbyists say David Seymour’s backing down, but is he?
NewsHub 14 December 2018 
Despite lobby groups claiming David Seymour is backing down from his euthanasia bill, he told Newshub he’s more determined than ever to see it become law.
“I’m more in favour of it than ever. I’ve championed this for three years,” he said.

That’s despite National Director of Family First New Zealand Bob McCoskrie claiming Mr Seymour has conceded to his opponents and is backing down from his bill.

“Family First NZ is welcoming ACT MP David Seymour’s significant backdowns on his assisted suicide bill, and says that this indicates just how weak and flawed the bill is,” Mr McCoskrie said on Friday.

Even pro-life group Right to Life New Zealand said it was “delighted that David Seymour has now recognised that the majority of Members of Parliament are opposed to his [bill]”.
But that’s rubbish, according to Mr Seymour, who told Newshub it’s an “absolutely bizarre reaction” from both lobby groups.

He said anyone who’s questioning his commitment to his End of Life Choice Bill is “clearly not really involved in politics because they don’t know much about it – or they may have nefarious motivations.”

The aim of his bill is to legalise voluntary euthanasia in certain circumstances. The explanatory notes say the bill gives “people with a terminal illness or a grievous and irremediable medical condition the option of requesting assisted dying”.

Mr McCoskrie says there’s been “overwhelming opposition to David Seymour’s assisted suicide bill by submitters to the Select Committee”.

According to an analysis of a number of the submissions by the Care Alliance, 92 percent of submissions are against Mr Seymour’s bill.

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