The Associated Press reported that Oregon has expanded its state assisted suicide law to permit all Americans to die by assisted suicide by Oregon eliminating its state assisted suicide residency requirement.
In October 2021, Compassion and Choices, an assisted suicide lobby group, and Dr Nicholas Gideones, an assisted suicide prescribing doctor, launched a court case challenging the Oregon assisted suicide residency requirement. The assisted suicide lobby wanted to eliminate the “residency requirement” to allow all Americans to die by assisted suicide in Oregon. The lawsuit was filed in the federal court, claiming that the residency requirement is unconstitutional. (Link to news article).
EPC-USA were convinced that the Gideones case could be defeated.
The Associated Press article by Gene Johnson reported that:
Oregon will no longer require people to be residents of the state to use its law allowing terminally ill people to receive lethal medication, after a lawsuit challenged the requirement as unconstitutional.
EPC-USA was concerned that the Oregon government, which is supportive of assisted suicide, would not defend the state assisted suicide residency requirement in court, not because the residency requirement was unconstitutional but for political reasons. Sadly our fears were correct.
Johnson reported for the Associated Press that:
In a settlement filed in U.S. District Court in Portland on Monday, the Oregon Health Authority and the Oregon Medical Board agreed to stop enforcing the residency requirement and to ask the Legislature to remove it from the law.
This decision has changed assisted suicide from a state to a national issue since all Americans will be able to die by assisted suicide in Oregon. The assisted suicide lobby announced that they will now pressure other states that have legalized assisted suicide to also eliminate their residency requirements.
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This decision also highlights our concerns with the use of telehealth. The assisted suicide lobby wants to approve out of state assisted suicide requests via telehealth and to send the lethal drugs by mail to the out of state requestor.
EPC-USA hopes that a state that opposes assisted suicide will launch a court case to prevent out of state assisted suicide laws from killing their citizens.
This is an historic decision because it extends assisted suicide nationally, including the many states that have strengthened their laws prohibiting assisted suicide.
EPC-USA opposes assisted suicide. These laws give physicians, and in some states nurses, the right to be directly involving with causing the death of another person. This is not an issue of self-killing, which is always a tragedy, but rather these laws enable healthcare workers to have the right to decide who should live and who should die and to prescribe lethal drugs with the intention of causing death.