10 questions for David Seymour

david seymour

An extreme version of a very bad idea is how Matthew Jansen describes David Seymour’s “End of Life Choice Bill”.

Jansen, Secretary of the Care Alliance made the comment in a media release, 12 July, launching the “Ten questions for David Seymour” campaign.

The campaign, designed to prompt New Zealand Members of Parliament to give serious thought to the bill’s issues, highlights ten questions MP’s the Care Alliance thinks MP’s need to ask.

Starting on 12 July, the “Ten Questions” have been progressively released.

  1. Why 18 years of age?
  2. Are people with mental illness in or out?
  3. Why involve doctors? Why not lawyers?
  4. How many deaths per year from this Bill?
  5. What is the error rate of medical diagnosis?
  6. How do you prevent subtle coercion of older people?
  7. How much money will this save in health care spending?
  8. How does this not undermine suicide prevention efforts?
  9. Why is assisted suicide seen as a compassionate act for your disabled people when suicide is seen as a tragedy for other young people?
  10. Would a person with chronic arthritis be eligible?

The last question was released today.

“Inconsistent” is how Jansen labels David Seymour’s argument that euthanasia is a compassionate solution.

“If killing is so kind, why not make it available for children as they do in Belgium and the Netherlands?” he asks.

Jansen says simplistic solutions are not suitable for such a life-changing issue, and he is urging all New Zealanders to study the questions and be informed.

Highlighting the practice of assisted suicide in the Netherlands where people with a mental illness can be euthanised, Care Alliance statistics show a 1,575% increase in psychiatric disorder assisted suicide between 2009-16.

In 2016, 70% of those with a psychiatric disorder in the Netherlands were dementia cases.

In neighbouring Belgium, the total number of people euthanised in 2015 was 2022. This is up from 24 in 2002; an 8,325% increase.

The Care Alliance warns it is widely accepted that medical diagnosis is wrong in at least 10-15% of cases and medical prognoses are inaccurate up to 80% of the time.

It warns that euthanasia marginalises an already vulnerable group.

The Care Alliance brings together organisations and individuals who want to nurture better conversations about dying in New Zealand. It includes


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