|Sir George receives petition from Church against Assisted Dying Bill
7 Oct 2005
"Following Mollie Antrobus' letter to the Editor of the Andover Advertiser ( 19th August) encouraging those members of the public who feel strongly about the dangers of a parliamentary bill permitting euthanasia becoming law, many letters have been written both to me as the local MP and to members of the House of Lords who will be debating this bill on 10th October. In addition, a petition was sent to churches in Andover so that their congregations could sign if that was their wish. One of these petitions together with some additional pertinent messages was hand delivered to me by Mollie Antrobus and Jeremy LeLean on Friday at St John the Baptist Roman Catholic Church. I promised to deliver this to Lord Joffe when the House returns on Monday."
This is what the petition says
PETITION AGAINST ALL FORMS OF EUTHANASIA
For the attention of all peers sitting in the House of Lords
We, the undersigned, as patients of NHS services, totally oppose all forms of euthanasia and we want those who represent us in the House of Commons and House of Lords to oppose any Bill on Euthanasia or Physician Assisted Suicide.
We are concerned that the BMA and the RCN have now taken a neutral stance on the topic of euthanasia and firmly believe that this is not the view of all members of these bodies who we rely on to protect our rights and lives when we are at our most vulnerable.
We want more resources to be directed to palliative care so that patients such as ourselves can rely on health professionals to have the facilities, equipment, drugs and training that they need to ensure that those reaching the end of their lives can do so with some comfort and dignity and at the natural time.
Sir George said he was opposed to the Assisted Dying Bill."Such a Bill could never be introduced without the support of the medical profession, who remain opposed to it. I understand the concern that many people have about suffering from a terminal illness, but I believe the right approach is suitable palliative care and pain control, rather than voluntary euthanasia with all the potential problems and abuses that go with it. I applaud the work of the Countess of Brecknock Hospice in Andover and believe that those who are concerned about dying in pain should visit it to see how patients are handled with sensitivity and compassion."