From Sarah Wootton - Dignity in Dying <[email protected]>
Subject BREAKING: First ever Commons inquiry into assisted dying
Date December 5, 2022 5:39 PM
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Good afternoon friend,

Today, the Health and Social Care Select Committee has demonstrated that MPs
have listened to us, by launching the first ever House of Commons inquiry into assisted dying.
[[link removed]] This follows three years of intense work on our #CompassionIsNotACrime
campaign, led by families with direct experience of the failure of the current

I am so grateful to you and all our incredible supporters who refused to let
this issue drop. This is a historic milestone - parliamentary inquiries have often been the first step toward law change
around the world. I urge the committee to make the most of this opportunity to put dying people
and their families - their needs and experiences - at the heart of this inquiry.

Joy Munns has been at the forefront of this campaign since 2019. Joy's mother,
Mavis Eccleston, was tried and acquitted of murder and manslaughter after
surviving an attempt to end her own life alongside her terminally ill husband
Dennis in 2017. Joy had this to say upon hearing this news:

“I am glad that Parliament has finally listened to calls from my family and
others affected by the injustice of our current laws … When my Dad was dying in
agony from bowel cancer, he desperately wanted to die on his own terms with his
family around him… But he was denied that option. I urge members of the
Committee to ask themselves how they can possibly conclude that the law is
working well when this is the impact it has.”

Kit Malthouse MP, co-chair of the All-Parliamentary Group on Choice at the End
of Life highlighted that the “challenge for the Committee, especially those who have been opposed in the
past, is to put themselves at the bedside with their constituents who have been
through such horror, listen to them objectively and examine the evidence on
whether the current law is serving the public – and primarily dying people and
their families – as it should.”

Every day, dying people are being forced to make impossible decisions between
suffering, suicide or seeking the compassion of another country. The message from the public to politicians couldn’t be simpler: you cannot
ignore this any longer. MPs on the Committee must consider the consequences of
inaction and harms caused by the current law.

Change is coming to the British Isles. Just last week the Isle of Man announced
a public consultation on assisted dying legislation, Jersey is moving ahead with
its proposals for change, and Scotland’s Assisted Dying Bill recently secured
double the number of MSPs required to begin its parliamentary journey next year. We are all part of the same fight.

I’ll be in touch later in the week with more information about how you can
respond to the Commons inquiry, so do keep an eye on your inbox! For now though,
take a moment to be proud of what you have accomplished and of the movement that
you make possible. I’m so grateful to you for every action you’ve taken to help
get us to this point.

All best wishes,

Sarah Wootton

Chief Executive

Dignity in Dying

Our campaign is powered by our supporters - like you. We’re 100% funded by
individual donations, so we can keep fighting, together, to change the law on
assisted dying in the UK. Could you chip in today?

Donate £5 now
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