What will happen to the euthanasia bill?

A question hangs over the future of the End of Life Choices private member’s bill because its sponsor, Maryan Street, has not been elected to the new parliament.

The proposed bill provided for both physician-assisted euthanasia (PAE) and physician-assisted suicide (PAS).

The Bill was introduced in 2012 but was withdrawn in September 2013.

The reason given for this action was to avoid the bill becoming a distraction, should it have been drawn before the 2014 election.

The Labour Leadership did not want it debated during an election year.

Street had pledged to return the bill to the ballot immediately after the election.

She said “this will be one of my first actions”.

At the time it was introduced the New Zealand Catholic Bishops issued a statement in which they said,  “There are many reasons why people object to legalising euthanasia and/or assisted-suicide.”

“While these can include religious and moral ones, our concern is to point out the social dangers of such a law change.”

Right to Life has written to David Cunliffe and to each of the members of the Labour caucus requesting that they recognise that this dangerous bill is a poison chalice that is likely to be detrimental to the party’s future chances of election.

Right to life has asked them to take immediate action to ensure that in the interest of the vulnerable in society and indeed the Labour Party itself, that the End of Life Choices be finally and permanently rejected.

GayNZ.com has reported that Street, a three-term MP and past president of the Labour Party, is “devastated” at Labour’s collapse in the polls.



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