Speech on the Assisted Dying Bill – 7 Nov 2014

My Lords, from day one, I was minded not to support the Assisted Dying Bill and made my views known to fellow Members of this House. However, I have listened to today’s debate. My reasons for not supporting the Bill are my faith—everybody has their own faith and can choose whether to follow it—but also a personal experience.

Some 25 years ago, my father was critically ill. After he had been many days in hospital, I was told that he was going to die and that, if we wanted to take him home, we could. And we did. I was told that it could be a few hours, a few days, a few weeks or even a few months, but that he was on his way to dying and that there was nothing we could do to help him to live longer.

In the condition that he was in, I was feeling my father’s pain. I would do anything in my control at that time to help him, but I could not. However, when we took him home, he surprised not only me but the doctors and everybody else. Not only did he pull through that situation but he is still alive. He is nearly 90 now. I am glad that this Bill was not approved at that time and that we did not have the ability to assist him to die, otherwise we would have helped to kill a person who is still alive after 25 years.

From Hansard

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