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Aid-in-Dying Advocates Praise New CT Bill


Friday, February 12, 2021   

HARTFORD, Conn. - A bill to allow medical aid-in-dying has just been introduced in the Connecticut Legislature.

House Bill 6425 would permit a person with less than six months to live to get prescription medication to end their life, as long as they are mentally sound and get the consent of two doctors.

Rep. Jonathan Steinberg - D-Westport - who chairs the House Public Health Committee, said it's matter of showing compassion for people who are suffering needlessly.

"Connecticut should be able to afford individuals with a terminal diagnosis an opportunity to end life on their own terms," said Steinberg. "That's all we're talking about."

Similar legislation has been introduced multiple times over the past seven years.

The Connecticut State Medical Society recently has adopted a neutral position on the issue. Some opponents cite moral concerns about hastening the end of life.

Michael Tucker from Easton said his good friend, actor René Auberjonois of "Star Trek" fame, was able to pass away peacefully from lung cancer using a similar law in the Golden State.

"One of the last things he said was a thanks to the State of California for allowing him to die," said Tucker, "not only with dignity, but with the choice of how to proceed. Surrounded by his kids, he died as he lived. As an artist."

In a 2020 Gallup poll, 74% of Americans said they support medical aid-in-dying, which is now permitted in nine states, plus the District of Columbia. Oregon has had a similar law for decades, with no reports of abuse.

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