Dying mission creep
SIR – Baroness Meacher’s Bill on assisted dying doesn’t explicitly target disabled people. But for many disabled people it’s not difficult to see the writing on the wall.
I was struck by a statement a few years ago by a group calling itself the Commission on Assisted Dying, which was made up largely of supporters of a change in the law.
In its report this group expressed the view that lethal drugs should not be offered to disabled people “at this point in time”. I found those five words chilling. They told me that I would not be a candidate for legalised assisted suicide at first, but should consider myself in the waiting room.
Such “mission creep” is inevitable when a law resting on a natural frontier, and applying equally to everyone, irrespective of their state of physical health or physical ability, is replaced by a law with an arbitrary boundary like terminal illness. Such laws contain within themselves the seeds of their own expansion. To ignore this is to court danger.
Baroness Grey-Thompson (Crossbench)