Bills Seeking to Expand Death With Dignity Act
Nearly 25 years ago, Oregonians approved a ballot measure legalizing physician-assisted suicide. After facing legal challenges, the Death with Dignity Act was implemented in 1997. This made Oregon the first state in the nation to embrace one’s right to medically end his or her life if faced with a terminal illness. Since then, six states and the District of Columbia have legalized Death with Dignity statutes.
During this legislative session, several bills have been introduced that seek to create loopholes that may put innocent people in danger and make it easier to end one’s life.
- House Bills 2217, 2232, and 2903 expand the ways assisted suicide can be administered. They create a path for a bad actor to end a vulnerable person’s life and make it look like assisted suicide.
- House Bills 2232 and 2903 would allow people who are not terminally ill to end their life by broadening the definition of terminal illness to include those years away from dying, even if there is a known treatment.
- Senate Bill 579 creates a “fast track” request scheme for those who are believed to be at the very end of life. It bypasses what protections exist in the current law. This loophole will put the most vulnerable people at risk of being coerced into ending their lives.
We view these bills as a threat to valuable lives made in the image of God. Individuals already have the option of ending their lives through physician-assisted suicide. Why make it easier to do so? We urge you to contact your legislators and ask them to protect vulnerable Oregonians by opposing these bills.
You can find your elected representatives and their contact information by clicking here.