Assisted Dying Bill

A private members bill from Dr Alex Allinson MHK aimed at bringing in Assisted Dying laws on the Island has had its first reading in Tynwald today at the beginning of the parliamentary process required before it can become law.

The proposals for these new laws have finely split opinion. There were 3,326 response to a public consultation which ended in January this year and 49.61% disagreed with the principle of assisted dying while 49.01% agreed with it.

One of those speaking out against the Bill is Trevor Moore, who is chair of campaign group My Death My Decision, spoke at a public meeting on Island  Monday evening.

A group of about 50 Island based health and social care workers are a local group in opposition to the new legislation and Group member GP Graham McAll, said his concern was for vulnerable people, as the bill would “put at risk people who are coerced”, he said, adding it was “incredibly difficult for doctors to spot coercion”.

Another member, speech therapist Becky Traynor, said she was worried the bill would too easily be extended in the future.

If approved, the service would run through the island’s national health service, Manx Care.

The bill has its second reading in Tynwald planned for later in the year in October.

A series of prayers have been available on the Churches Alive in Mann (CAiM) website has further information about who to contact to voice your opinion and further resources.

Bishop Peter in light of today’s reading offers the following prayer:

Loving Father, life is a precious gift from you.
Help us to recognise your sacred image in all people.
Give strength, wisdom and effectiveness as we stand against the proposed Assisted Dying Bill.
Teach us to trust in your sovereign care from the cradle to the grave.
Lord Jesus, as you reached out in love and compassion, help us in your name to protect the vulnerable and to seek justice for the voiceless.
Holy Spirit, You establish Christ’s Kingdom on Earth.
Help us, and our MHKs and MLCs: to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God.
Living God, help us to work and pray in your strength.
Please have mercy on our Island.
Deliver us from a culture of death and may we all be assisted to live.
We ask this in the strong and merciful name of Jesus, depending on the power of the Holy Spirit.