Assisted Dying Bill to Be Brought Forward

Later this summer, Ramsey MHK Dr Alex Allinson, will seek leave to bring forward a Private Members’ Bill that could lead to changes to the island’s laws on a assisted dying.

Dr Allinson is also the Enterprise Minister, but would move this as an MHK not a minister.

The MHK, who also introduced the Abortion Reform Act when sitting as a backbencher, said last year that the island should consider again.

Speaking at a recent event hosted by the Liberal Vannin Party, Dr Allinson confirmed that he was working towards introducing a PMB later this summer, as well as a full public consultation.

While there are concerns around safe-guarding, Dr Allinson has said these issues can and have been successfully addressed in other jurisdictions.

Vicky Christian, of the island Facebook Group ‘Let Me Choose‘, also spoke at the meeting and outlined her years of campaigning on this topic and spoke of her hope that legislation would be passed on the Island in the near future.

During the meeting, Liberal Vannin Chair, Paul Weatherall, asked that the debate should allow for consideration across a wide range of options. Mr Weatherall said he wanted to ensure that the option wouldn’t be restricted to those who are designated terminally ill and able to administer a lethal dose themselves, but to also include those unable to do that and who faced a life with little or no dignity and no hope of recovery; including those making a ‘living will’ in anticipation of losing capacity in future through dementia or other illness.

Speaking to Gef, Dr Allinson said he is ‘briefing Tynwald members of some of the issues surrounding Assisted Dying in the near future and drawing on examples where legislation has been introduced in other countries’.