This is Tom Curran talking about his partner Marie Fleming’s right to die court case, the aims of Right To Die Ireland, and his own involvement in Exit International. Tom was speaking to the HAI in April 2013.
Archive for Right to Die
This is Michael Nugent speaking on end of life care and the right to die at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in April 2013.
Mairin de Burca is a founder member of Right to Die Ireland. She is also a veteran of many feminist and other political campaigns in Ireland. In 1974 she won the equal right of women to sit on juries in Irish courts. In this article Mairin explains why she supports the right to die.
I cannot remember a time when I did not believe in the right of every individual to end their lives when and how they wished. I could not see how it was anyone else’s business to say to a person that they had no right over their own existence.
Life is not something we choose. It was given to us by our parents for various reasons of their own. If it becomes unbearable and there is no way to improve it, then ending it makes sense for some people. If there is a right to life, there must be a right to die at a time of one’s choosing.
One of the biggest misconceptions about the right to die is that it is merely about dying. Actually, most people who prepare to end their own lives, in case they need to, end up dying naturally. But, by knowing that they have the option to avoid suffering, they are free to increase their quality of life in the time they have left.
My wife Anne Holliday was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer in 2009. Anne did not want to die, but nor did she fear death. She was grateful to have had enough notice of her death to be able to do many things that she wanted to do first.
Anne wanted to die peacefully and painlessly rather than have to suffer needlessly before dying. She had decided that, if she had reached that stage, she would have ended her own life and I would have have helped her to do this. Once she had made that decision, her quality of life soared and we were able to fully enjoy the time she had left.
Thankfully, Anne died suddenly but naturally, so we had the benefit of not having to worry about needless suffering at the end, but without her having to actually take the decision to end her life and carry it out.
Anne was committed to the campaign to legalise assisted peaceful dying in Ireland. She had spent most of her life campaigning on peace, justice, community and environmental issues. She saw the right to die as her final campaign, and I am continuing this on in her memory.