Tuesday, 13 November, 2018

Judge Overturns California Aid-in-Dying Law

Betsy Davis smiles during her Alpert Betsy Davis smiles during her"Right To Die Party in Ojai. Niels Alpert via AP
Kenny Thornton | 17 May, 2018, 23:17

While he did not base his decision on the merits of the law, Judge Daniel Ottolia of the Riverside County Superior Court agreed with the plaintiffs, represented by the Life Legal Defense Foundation (LLDF), that the legislation was not pertinent to the objective of the special session.

California is one of seven states, including Colorado, Hawaii, Montana, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington, along with the District of Columbia, that allow doctors to prescribe lethal prescriptions for terminally ill patients.

California's End-of-Life Option Act already came back from death once before, and now it's being tested again.
He said he would try to persuade Brown, the state attorney general's office and the courts to keep the law in effect. Normally when there is a suspected suicide, authorities investigate the cause of death to see if the person was coerced, she said.

"The arguments just don't hold water", said Kevin Diaz, who added that he hopes the law will remain in place during the appeal process.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said Wednesday he will appeal a judge's ruling late Tuesday overturning the state's right to die law for terminally ill Californians.

Though the ruling might only be temporary, one terminally ill woman at the May 15 hearing was grateful for it.

School Bus Crash Closes Route 80
Police have not released information, but emergency dispatch radio monitoring services reported one fatality and many injuries. The bus was from East Brook Middle School in Paramus, New Jersey, Police Chief Ken Ehrenberg said, according to WPVI-TV.

Along with plaintiffs, the American Academy of Medical Ethics and several physicians, the Life Legal Defense Foundation challenged the California's physician-assisted suicide law, arguing that it lacks safeguards to protect against abuse and that suicide does not provide healthcare. California was the fifth state to take such a step. Opposition to the law has been led by some religious groups and advocates for the disabled.

California's law allows patients with six months or less to live to request lethal medications.

"We are pleased with today's ruling, which reinstates critical legal protections for vulnerable patients", Life Legal Defense Foundation Executive Director Alexandra Snyder said in a statement on the ruling. If the ruling stands, he said, lawmakers could reconsider the issue at a regular session and set tougher standards for doctors to diagnose terminal illnesses and determine that a patient is mentally competent. A judge in Riverside County on Tuesday overturned the law because of concerns about how it was passed by the Legislature. Dan Diaz, the husband of Brittany Maynard, who inspired the law when she moved to OR to end her life after a brain cancer diagnosis joined ABC7 News to talk about the recent developments. The law is different than euthanasia, because the patient must be physically able to take the life-ending drugs on their own.

"It represents a tremendous blow to the assisted suicide legalization movement and puts state legislatures on notice regarding the political trickery of groups like Compassion and Choices", he said.

An estimated 504 Californians have received prescriptions for medical aid in dying as of June 2017 since the law took effect on June 9, 2016, according to Compassion & Choices. "I made a promise to my wife Brittany that I would continue her fight to authorize medical aid in dying in California".

The courts have given the state five days to file an emergency appeal.

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