by Steven Ertelt
February 1, 2006
London, England (LifeNews.com) — A new coalition of groups oppose to the promotion of assisted suicide and euthanasia has banded together to fight the grisly practices in England. Doctors, disability rights advocates and the pro-life community have come together to form a new organization.
The Care Not Killing Alliance, formed on Tuesday, reflects the concern the individual groups have about the possibility the British House of Lords could approve legislation sponsored by Lord Joffe and backed by euthanasia advocates.
John Wiles, chairman of the Association for Palliative Medicine, told the London Times that his group is one of the organizations participating in the coalition.
He said the various groups are concerned that opposition to the euthanasia lobby has been too weak and not cohesive. He said 18 groups have come together to form the alliance.
“Euthanasia is about killing people, so we decided not to be too subtle,” he said.
Baroness Finlay of Llandaff, a palliative care specialist, told the Times the groups agree that "the answer to suffering is not to kill the sufferer.”
Advocates of assisted suicide renewed their push for a new law allowing it after a British woman suffering from a rare brain disease traveled to Switzerland to die with the help of a controversial organization.
Anne Turner, a retired doctor, was afflicted with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, or PSP, an incurable disease that took the life of actor Dudley Moore in 2002.
She went to Switzerland and died in a Zurich apartment last month after officials from the euthanasia group Dignitas gave her a lethal dose of drugs.
Turner was the 42nd British resident to die in Europe with assistance from Dignitas. The group now has 673 British members, up from just 100 three years ago.
Assisted suicide is a crime in England, punishable by up to 14 years in prison. Legislation proposed to legalize the practice did not have support from Tony Blair’s government and never received a vote.