Connecticut State Representative Jonathan Steinbert (D-Westport) introduced HB 5898, An Act Concerning Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill, on January 23, 2019. The bill was referred to the Joint Committee on Public Health where it was heard on March 18, 2019.
Write your Connecticut State Legislators to urge their support for the Aid in Dying for Terminally Ill Act!
The Connecticut General Assembly is considering HB 5898, An Act Concerning Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill, sponsored by Representative Jonathan Steinbert (D-Westport). The bill would allow qualified, terminally-ill adult residents of Connecticut to legally obtain a prescription from their physician for medications to end their life peacefully, in a dignified way, at the place and time of their choosing.
The Connecticut Medical Society (CSMS) in February 2019 changed its position on aid-in-dying legislation from opposed to that of engaged neutrality.
The CSMS is committed to protecting its members’ freedom to decide what medical aid-in-dying options to provide to patients in accordance with each physician’s personally held values, beliefs and ethical standards, including the decision whether or not to write a prescription for a lethal dose of medication, if legalized in Connecticut.
HB 5417, An Act Concerning End-of-Life Care, an assisted dying bill, was raised in the Connecticut General Assembly on March 2, 2018, and referred to the Joint Committee on Public Health. A hearing on the bill took place on March 20, 2018. The bill did not advance.
The first attempts to pass physician-assisted dying bills in Connecticut took place in 1995 (HB 6928, SB 334) and 1997 (HB 6083), at the time Oregon was considering its own Death with Dignity Act.
After Washington passed the second Death with Dignity statute in the nation, the issue returned to the Connecticut legislature in 2009 (SB 1138).
Bills considered in the subsequent years received Committee hearings but were not put up for a vote:
- 2017: Connecticut State Representative Jonathan Steinberg (D-136th District) introduced HB 6024, An Act Concerning Aid in Dying for Terminally Ill Patients, on January 19, 2017, with Representative Josh Elliott (D-88th District) co-sponsoring. The bill was referred to the Joint Committee on Public Health.
- 2015: HB 7015, An Act Concerning Aid in Dying for Terminally Ill Patients, sponsored by 3 Senators and 13 Representatives
- 2014: HB 5326, An Act Concerning Compassionate Aid in Dying for Terminally Ill Patients, sponsored by Representative Betsy Ritter; its companion bill was sponsored by Senator Edward Meyer
- 2013: HB 6217, An Act Concerning Death with Dignity, and SB 48, An Act Concerning Physician-Assisted Suicide