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Assisted dying

  • 20-03-2024 8:38am
    Registered Users Posts: 8,298 ✭✭✭

    Can’t find a thread on this, please merge if there is one.

    Why did TDs decide on this and not a Citizens Assembly?



  • Registered Users Posts: 10,405 ✭✭✭✭Jim_Hodge

    Why would a nonsense like a Citizens Assembly be employed on something like this? It's the Oireachtas' job to legislate.

  • Registered Users Posts: 181 ✭✭jucko

    glooomtastic :)

    apt name :)

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,018 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus

    TDs always decide things; citizens assemblies only ever make recommendations, but it remains the responsibility of the Oireachtas to act, or not act, on those recommendations.

    Furthermore, citizens' assemblies only ever make recommendations on the matters that they have been set up to consider.

    So, why did a citizens' assembly not make recommendations in relation to assisted dying? Because no citizens' assembly was set up to consider that matter.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,009 ✭✭✭Hodors Appletart

    Have to agree on the previous poster's assessment of the CA - the government outright ignored any advice that came out of the CA as regards the Care Act referendum, and forced a fudge on the vote on the Drugs thing the CA recently sat for, for months, and will probably either do nothing or do something that didn't come from the CA if they ever get around to enacting legislation on it at all.

    As it stands now, the CA is nothing but a talking shop that the government ignores. Pointless.

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,208 ✭✭✭✭recode the site

    There was/is a thread somewhere on the subject of assisted dying, but with the search function not fit for purpose difficult to find. It was quite lively when this topic was previously mooted.

    I’m not quite sure how I feel about it overall. I fear it could be used in lieu of proper care afforded by state services / as a way of relatives to unload a “burdensome” family member / as option a person might take because they have a low self-worth. On the other side of the coin, it could relieve the most unbearable aspects of suffering a person finds that fate has dealt them, when pain can only be relieved by palliation to the extent that quality of life is extremely poor.

    I’ve progressive MS myself and I wonder how in a few years time I might feel about all this. I love my freedom and independence, I love going out and about, I can’t see myself being content with being long-term in a care centre. I might change my mind and adapt to being cared for, I might even take kindly to it. I don’t know though. If I thought I could be “put to sleep” I might be first in the queue for it.

    Can I get away with anything if I pay the piper, so to speak?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,978 ✭✭✭✭Dav010

    You wouldn’t qualify under any of the criteria being put forward.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,927 ✭✭✭StrawbsM

    If I get to a stage where I’m confined to a bed or chair for the rest of my days and I need others to move me, wash me and wipe my bum then I’d like off this planet please.

    I also don’t want the children that I decided to bring into this world burdened with having to give up their lives to just exist for the sole purpose of prolonging my existence. I have no faith in the state care system as it is and can only see those services being eroded further.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,063 ✭✭✭Trigger Happy

    I would be all for assisted dying. If someone can make the decision for themselves and it saves them from a painful last few months then its absolutely the right thing to do. Put the right protections in place etc.

    My uncle in Canada had an assisted death and it was such a relief for his family that he did not need to suffer. He called me on the day of his death to say goodbye and while it was a tough conversation I do cherish it. He went the way he wanted to go - at home with his family and in no pain.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,018 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus

    The committee report isn't available online yet, but per newspaper reports it will recommend that the law apply to people diagnosed with an illness or a medical condition that is “incurable, irreversible, progressive” and at an advanced stage that will cause death within six months, or within 12 months in the case of a neurodegenerative condition.

    Recode wouldn't qualify now, but they're expressly looking to the future. MS is a neurodegenerative condition and in the current state of medical science it's considered incurable. It's certainly irreversible and progressive. So, yeah, it looks to me that there could come a point for any MS sufferer where they would qualify.

    Simply "not being content with long-term in a care centre" wouldn't get you there, though. Your disease would have to progress to a point where doctors are telling you that you have less than 12 months to live. Many people with MS never reach that point, but some do. And no individual person with MS can know with confidence that they will, or will not.

  • Registered Users Posts: 666 ✭✭✭Vote4Squirrels

    So many tales of Irish and UK people going to Dignitas and others are similar to yours - my condolences on your loss.

    I saw my father go from a Victor McLaglen type of man, big and strong - to someone who needed care and forgot my mother had passed away often - had Covid not taken him he may well be suffering still. We always had conversations like that - his comment was always "pull the plug girl". He'd have been right behind this in his own country.

    I would certainly take advantage of the option if certain illnesses were diagnosed and whilst I am happy to go to Zurich, I would like loved ones with me without threat of jail.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,978 ✭✭✭✭Dav010

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,227 ✭✭✭✭dulpit

    Assuming any law has strong protections against family members coercing loved ones into a decision they don't want, I see assisted dying as an absolute no brainer to be introduced here. Give people the dignity of a choice. It's not going to be mandatory or anything, so if you disagree with it, then you don't have to choose it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,018 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,978 ✭✭✭✭Dav010

    That simplistic rationale could be assigned to a plethora of medical issues, people are not going to have access to assisted dying based on “well it’s not as if no one ever dies of this condition”. If you go back and read the poster’s post, their issue was about contentment in a care centre.

  • Registered Users Posts: 25,656 ✭✭✭✭Mrs OBumble

  • Registered Users Posts: 33,822 ✭✭✭✭Hotblack Desiato

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,208 ✭✭✭✭recode the site

    My own thread LOL!!! I had genuinely forgotten starting it!!

    🤣😱 I need memory tablets!

    Can I get away with anything if I pay the piper, so to speak?

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,227 ✭✭✭✭dulpit

    So your view is that the government would put together a law to help families bump off their elderly relatives?

  • Registered Users Posts: 25,656 ✭✭✭✭Mrs OBumble

    No, the government would see it as a mechanism to reduced the unfunded state pension liability.

    A side effect is that families would have an option to promote to their elderly and vulnerable members, which would speed up intergenerational wealth transfer. Think of it as like an unintended consequence.

  • Registered Users Posts: 666 ✭✭✭Vote4Squirrels

    That is cynical beyond words - and even if you don’t agree with the idea, should not stand in the way of anyone who does.

    I personally would have never had an abortion but I enthusiastically voted to repeat the Eigthth as it benefitted many women’s health.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,511 ✭✭✭nachouser

    And the death panels, don't forget the auld death panels.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,298 ✭✭✭Gloomtastic!

    So why was it decided to dispense with the CA and go straight to TDs? That’s what has me wondering.

    The topic is as divisive as other topics the CA has talked about so I would have thought it perfect for CA.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,586 ✭✭✭uptherebels

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,723 ✭✭✭SeanW

    That's basically what happened in Canada, they made MAiD the "cure" for just about everything. There was a story somewhere, I'll have to dig it up, about a woman with some paralysis who applied to her local authority for help retrofitting her home with disability equipment, and their response was basically: "well we don't have the money for it, but if you're really suffering, have you considered assisted suicide?"

    Any moves to allow euthanasia in Ireland would need really strong safeguards to prevent that sort of insanity from taking hold here.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,690 ✭✭✭donaghs

    I’m in favour of assisted dying, in theory. How it’s put into practice is a whole lot of other questions. We should welcome questions and sceptics, especially over a matter of life and death.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,018 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus

  • Moderators, Education Moderators Posts: 5,022 Mod ✭✭✭✭G_R

    There is no one citizens assembly - different ones with different members are convened as and when the gov of the day decides to do so.

  • Registered Users Posts: 81,514 ✭✭✭✭Overheal

    I presume this is the story. Indeed, that's appalling.

    "I have a letter saying that if you're so desperate, madam, we can offer you MAID, medical assistance in dying," said Gauthier who first injured her back in a training accident in 1989.

    Testifying in French, she said she has been fighting for a home wheelchair ramp for five years and expressed her concerns about the assisted dying offer in a recent letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

    "I sent a letter to Prime Minister Trudeau and that they [Veterans Affairs] offered me MAID and would supply equipment," said Gauthier.

    Happy to supply the MAID equipment... reluctant to supply the ramp though. There's something evil seeming about that.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,018 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus

    Mmm. It's not a matter of conspiracy theories. You don't have to set out to design a policy that will produce bad outcomes in order to end up with one that produces bad outcomes. And bad outcomes are equally bad whether they are intended or unintended. And the possibility of quite seriously bad outcomes from a policy on assisted dying is obvious.

    What you have to ask yourself is not only "what do we want this policy to do?" but also "what incentives does this policy create?". The post above relates a story in which a person seeking assistance and support for her condition was offered assisted dying instead. And this isn't the first such story concerning the Canadian regime; there are many similar. There are serious concerns that in the Canadian system assisted dying is offered in response to problems resulting from socio-economic factors, and this alleviates pressure to address the underlying socio-economic issues.

    It's obvious that if we create a regime in which the state (or anyone else) can save money by administering assisted dying, that's a bad combination of incentives which is highly likely to have a bad outcome, involving avoidable deaths. That's not an argument for saying that you can't have an assisted dying regime at all, but it is an argument for saying that you have to think long and hard about your assisted dying regime; what it's supposed to do; what it might do; and how to make it do the one and not the other. Dismissing these concerns with references to tinfoil hats is pretty much a guarantee of producing an assisted dying regime that will produce horrible outcomes.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,586 ✭✭✭uptherebels

    And I'm sure you will be providing evidence, and detailing how that "offer" would have worked within the criteria of qualifying for MAID.

    I'll wait