Category: News

Mike Yardley: Legalising euthanasia a step onto a slippery slope

by Mike Yardley, Stuff, 25 October 2016 Mr Yardley has written an opinion piece on how he has grappled with the issue of euthanasia and assisted suicide. Flying home to Christchurch last week, assisted dying was playing on my mind. No, not in response to the feckless behaviour of some passengers, but on the back… Read more »

Europe’s morality crisis: Euthanizing the mentally ill

by Charles Lane, Washington Post, 19 October 2016 Mr Lane is an editorial writer and columnist for the Washington Post. He takes note of the release of official Belgian euthanasia statistics for 2014-15 which disclose that “124 of the 3,950 euthanasia cases in Belgium involved persons diagnosed with a ‘mental and behavioral disorder’”. The figure… Read more »

Sick patients not fit to choose euthanasia, MPs told

by Isaac Davison, New Zealand Herald, 12 October 2016 Mr Davison reports on the submission of Bernadette Scanlon to the Health Select Committee. Ms Scanlan is a young lawyer living in Wellington, who is presently in remission from Stage 3 cancer. During her second round of chemotherapy, the 28 year-old said she was often “hugely vulnerable”… Read more »

Human rights commissioner: Beware of assisted dying as ‘shame relief’

by Joanne Laucius, Ottawa Citizen, 16 October 2016 Catherine Frazee was Ontario’s Chief Human Rights Commissioner between 1989 and 1992. She was a professor of disability studies at Ryerson University until her retirement in 2010, and has spinal muscular atrophy. Professor Frazee says that “We cannot understand vulnerability, or protect vulnerable persons, without first grappling with inducement.”  … Read more »

New Zealand: The highest rate of teen suicide in the developed world

by Glenn McConnell, Stuff, 16 October 2016 Mr McConnell reports on a new OECD report that shows New Zealand has the highest teen suicide rate in the developed world. Despite the alarming information the report revealed nothing new. New Zealand continuously ranked among the worst in the world for our levels of teen suicide. In a normal week… Read more »

How Does Legalization of Physician-Assisted Suicide Affect Rates of Suicide?

by David Jones and David Paton, Southern Medical Journal, 2015;108(10):599-604 Jones and Paton have researched the relationship between suicide and assisted suicide in the United States. In particular, they were interested in testing the 1997 conjecture by Richard Posner that ‘Physician Assisted Suicide’ (PAS) “may have the effect of reducing the total number of suicides and… Read more »

Denver Post editorial board urges “No” to assisted suicide proposal

Denver Post, 11 October 2016 In November Colorado will vote on Proposition 106 which would legalise assisted suicide in a similar way to Oregon. The Denver Post editorial board has decided “After a lot of soul-searching, we are asking voters to reject Proposition 106, a measure that would give patients the legal right to end… Read more »

DHB member joins call for national mental health inquiry

by Tom Furley, RNZ National, 12 October 2016 Mr Furley reports on renewed calls for a national inquiry into mental health services in New Zealand following a murder-suicide last week by mental health patient Ross Bremner. The 34-year-old had a number of brief in-patient stays at Waikato Hospital’s specialist mental health unit between 2003 and… Read more »