The passage of death with dignity laws has had an impact that extends far beyond providing a heretofore unavailable end-of-life option. Death with dignity has improved end-of-life care nationwide.
Every day, we hear from people whose lives have been forever changed by a terminal illness and how their often heartbreaking experiences have motivated them to advocate for death with dignity. These are the latest stories we've featured, from California, Maine, and New York.
The events of the past few weeks in California have caused confusion and distress among the state's residents and sparked outrage among death with dignity supporters nationwide. Here is an overview of where things stand and what's next.
Riverside County Superior Court judge Daniel A. Ottolia yesterday officially overturned the California End of Life Option Act. The California End of Life Option Act is no longer in effect (for now).
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra on Monday appealed a district court ruling invalidating the End of Life Option Act; he requested the law be allowed to continue providing dying Californians with peace and control in their final days.
"With one stroke of his pen, Riverside Judge Daniel A. Ottolia callously struck out at California's terminally-ill patients in a cruel way," writes Deborah Ziegler in response to the May 15 ruling nullifying the End of Life Option Act.
The California Department of Public Health today released the first report on the use of the End of Life Option Act. The report, covering the period from June 9, 2016, when the law took effect, to December 31, 2016, shows that 111 Californians took medications to hasten their death.
Riverside County Superior Court Judge Daniel A. Ottolia today ruled to allow the lawsuit against the California End of Life Option Act to proceed. While the judge had already rightly ruled the law poses no threat to anyone, he decided there was enough grounds for the challenge to go ahead.
Every week has been significant in the Death with Dignity movement lately. Milestone after milestone, we approach the day when all Americans will have a full range of end-of-life options.
The full Vermont State Legislature passed the bill on May 13, 2013, and Vermont made history. On May 20, Governor Shumlin signed Act 39 (S.77) into law. The Green Mountain State was the first to pass a Death with Dignity law through the legislative process.