News and Views

News, information and opinions from Massachusetts disability rights advocates.

The Answer Is Not Medically Assisted Suicide – Disabled People Demand Full Civil, Human Rights

Click here for a PDF image scan of the article and the page it appears on in the Quincy Sun. The full, screen reader accessible text of the article is below.] by John B. Kelly for The Quincy Sun, August 18, 2022 38 years ago an accident left me paralyzed below my shoulders. My father was brokenhearted and wished I had died instead. His hopelessness about my life, however painful for me, was but a simple reflection of widespread prejudice against disabled people. A few years after my injury, Jack Kevorkian became a sort of folk hero for “helping” terminally ...
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Webinar: The Deadly Ableism of Assisted Suicide and Its Impacts on Marginalized Communities

Please join a zoom webinar on the dangers of assisted suicide, and the specific problems with Massachusetts Bill S.1384. Saturday July 16, 2pm-3:30pm. Register for the Assisted Suicide Webinar

Hear from members of Second Thoughts MA: Disability Rights Advocates against Assisted Suicide, and from the staff of Not Dead Yet, the national disability rights group long opposed to assisted suicide as a form of deadly discrimination against disabled people.
You Will Learn:
• The specifics of the current Massachusetts assisted suicide bill, S.1384
• Why assisted suicide is dangerous for disabled and BIPOC communities
• Why buzzwords assisted suicide supporters use, like "choice" and ...
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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 ...
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Statement against S.1384 by John B. Kelly

Opponents for legalized assisted suicide held a virtual legislative briefing on Tuesday, May 10, which prompted news outlets to seek a statement from Second Thoughts director John Kelly. Download John Kelly's statement against S.1384, or scroll down to read. Over the last 15 years, the Mass legislature and, in 2012, the people of the state, have wisely rejected the legalization of assisted suicide as too dangerous. The legislature should likewise reject S1384, which despite its name does not provide dying people "end-of-life options." The tragic reality is that under legalized assisted suicide, some people's lives will be ended without their ...
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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 ...
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Shavelson v. California Department of Health Care Services

DREDF Opposes Elimination of Fundamental Protections in California’s End of Life Options Act "In a pending legal case, Shavelson v. California Department of Health Care Services, a terminally ill plaintiff contends the self-administration requirement of California’s End of Life Options Act (ELOA) violates existing anti-discrimination laws on the basis of disability. While the plaintiff is eligible for physician assisted suicide and has the ability to self-administer lethal medication at present, they’d prefer to utilize the option later in the dying process, when self-administration is no longer possible. The lawsuit seeks to pressure California into eliminating the state’s most essential safeguard ...
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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: ...
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