The D.C. Council Health and Human Services Committee will vote on B21-38, a bill that would legalize assisted suicide, on Wednesday, October 5th.
This bill is dangerous for District residents, for multiple reasons:
1. This bill discriminates against racial and ethnic minorities who lack full access to pain management options, preventative medical care, specialized medical care, or insurance. If assisted suicide is legalized, minorities will be even more victimized.
2. This bill discriminates against the elderly. It creates conditions for elder abuse. Moreover, some doctors have been reported to counsel elderly individuals to consider choosing assisted suicide so as not to burden their families.
3. This bill discriminates against the poor. The Oregon Health Plan has already told several individuals that their company would pay for the pills to commit assisted suicide but could not pay for chemotherapy. What will stop other health plans from following suit?
4. This bill discriminates against individuals with disabilities. It implies that a life where a person does not have complete autonomy or complete ability to do everything that a typical person can do is a life that does not have value. This inherently discriminates against individuals with disabilities who overcome challenges daily.
5. This bill does not take into account misdiagnosis whereby a patient may live longer than six months and even in some cases overcome their illness.
6. This bill requires no mental health screening which endangers patients who are suffering with depression.
7. There is no notice to family and friends; no doctors, nurses, or independent witnesses to be present; no tracking of the deadly drugs from the pharmacy; and no recourse for reported abuse.
Here’s what YOU can do to help in this fight:
Send a letter to your council member.
Share this video from the No DC Suicide coalition.
Tweet the @councilofdc and individual members. Use the hashtag: #wrong4dc.
Call your ward’s council member as well as the at-large members who represent DC residents city-wide.
Thank you for taking a stand on behalf of the vulnerable!