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Action Needed! Oppose Bills S 1384 / H 2381

June 6, 2022

Oppose S.1384/H.2381, which would legalize assisted suicide and risk the lives of disabled people. Use this FORM to Protect Disabled Lives to send the message to the MA Joint Committee on Health Care Financing that these bills must not pass! To help us alert more people to this issue and encourage them to take action, please use our Social Media Action Guide (docx)

From John B. Kelly, Director of Second Thoughts, MA

Hello disability rights advocates and allies!

I wish I could write each of you individually, to encourage you to send the linked letter to the Massachusetts legislature’s Joint Committee on Health Care Financing, to urge the committee to REJECT assisted suicide bills S.1384/H.2381 as a threat to the lives of disabled people, including people disabled by their serious illness.

Here is the link which will enable you to send the letter to every committee member. At the bottom of the letter, you can make your own personal message.

And attached is an Action Toolkit (docx) to using social media, complete with preprinted messages, to get the point across the assisted suicide is too dangerous for disabled people! Letter and Action Guide developed by newly hired Assistant Director/Policy Analyst Jules Good (they/them).

Thanks so much!

John

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MA Legislators Shouldn’t Take the “Bait and Switch” on Assisted Suicide

Download this new information from the Patients Rights Action Fund (No Suicide MA.pdf) to use when talking to legislators and constituents.

Assisted suicide proponents in Massachusetts are using bait to convince legislators to pass S.1384/H. 2381 to legalize assisted suicide by claiming there are sufficient “safeguards” to protect patients from coercion and abuse. But, once the bait is taken and the law is passed, proponents switch to stripping away the “safeguards” just a few years later.

  • A challenge filed in federal court in California would eliminate the requirement that the lethal drugs be self-administered which would result in euthanasia. With lethal injection available in the home, vulnerable people would be at even greater risk of being killed with-out their consent.
  • Proponents successfully removed by court settlement the requirement in Oregon that only residents of the state be eligible for lethal drugs by claiming it is unconstitutional. Now, they are essentially asking Massachusetts legislators to support a bill with an unconstitu-tional residency requirement and are urging other legal states to remove their residency requirements.
  • In Colorado, at least two patients in their early 30s with anorexia nervosa received lethal assisted suicide drugs. In Oregon, at least one patient with anorexia nervosa received the drugs. This is a broad expansion into mental illness, even though neither state through their elected officials or by public vote anticipated that the assisted suicide laws they passed would allow such expansion.
  • The Massachusetts bills require a 15-day waiting period as did bills from other legal states. Since enacting assisted suicide laws, Oregon and California have drastically reduced their waiting periods to mere hours and Hawaii is following suit. The “safeguard” of a legitimate waiting period to allow patients to fully comprehend the enormity of the decision to end their lives is now claimed to be a “barrier”.
  • Physicians are often wrong in their prognoses that patients have only six months to live. In New Mexico, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants are allowed to prescribe lethal drugs, even though Medicare prohibits them from qualifying patients for hospice which is also based on a six-month prognosis. Washington and Hawaii are two legal states now pro-posing to allow these less-qualified medical professionals to have prescription authority.
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Action Needed on S 1384!

Friday, March 25, 2022

The assisted suicide bill, S.1384 (An Act relative to end of life options), moved to the Health Care Financing Committee yesterday.   The clock now starts ticking with the committee having 30 days to process the bill.   However, as we know, the deadline can be extended.   If there is no extension and no action by the committee, the bill is dead in 30 days.

Please contact Health Care Financing Committee members to urge them to vote against the bill.   We are working on individual meetings with the Chairs and members. 

Committee members are found here:   https://malegislature.gov/Committees/Detail/J24

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Actions Information

Oppose MA Bills

Help us oppose Massachusetts Bills H.4782 and S.2745 which would legalize assisted suicide.. Visit the Patients Rights Action Fund Action Center for information on how to support the opposition.