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Lords set to debate Joffe bill

more: News, Joffe Bill, News/Joffe Bill

1st October 2005

The debate on the House of Lords Select Committee report on Lord Joffe's Assisted Dying for the Terminally Ill Bill will take place on 10 October starting at 1530 and continuing until all speakers have had their turn, possibly as late as 2330. There are currently 59 speakers listed on the Lords Whips website at of whom just under half (28) are expected to speak against the bill.

There will be no vote on the day of the debate but arguments put forward will play a major part in determining future events. We expect Lord Joffe to introduce a revised bill attempting to legalise euthanasia along the lines of the Oregon model (PAS but not euthanasia) possibly as early as the following week. This will then proceed to a second reading (where there is traditionally no vote in the Lords) and then to a committee of the whole House before coming back to a third reading and vote. If it passes this it will proceed to the House of Commons. If it successfully traverses the Commons it will become law. This whole process could happen in a matter of a few months. The best chance of defeating the Bill is in the House of Lords either through ?wrecking amendments? or through a defeat at third reading.

Apathy and ignorance will be our main enemies. It is predicted in the Report on the Joffe Bill that an 'Oregon' law in the UK would lead to a 'body count' of 650 per annum compared with 13,000 for a 'Netherlands' Law.  You will find an excellent article on the Oregon experience on the website of CMF.

more Joffe Bill


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