Saturday, December 24, 2011

Assisted suicide is not legal in Hawaii

The group Hawaii against assisted suicide circulated a press release on Wednesday December 21 from the Alliance Defense Fund stating that the Attorney General of Hawaii has confirmed that assisted suicide is not legal in Hawaii.

Compassion & Choices (C & C), formerly known as the Hemlock Society, has claimed that a law dating back to 1909 allowed assisted suicide in Hawaii. The law that they were referring to allowed doctors to prescribe treatments that are not yet approved to people who are "hopeless and beyond recovery." C & C claimed that this meant that doctors could prescribe a lethal dose to assist the suicide of their patients.

David Louie, the Attorney General for Hawaii has confirmed that the 1909 law does not allow assisted suicide.

Hawaii attorney Jim Hochberg confirmed that:
"the history of the law clearly indicates its intent to prohibit prosecution of someone whose untested techniques or materials may be able to save a patient when traditional medical practise could not."
Hochberg explained that:
"This law simply does not give doctors discretian to hasten the death of patients and that no one should believe the recent falsehoods that pro-death proponents have spread about Hawaii law."
Margaret Dore
Margaret Dore, the leader of Choice is an Illusion and an attorney from Seattle Washington wrote an excellent legal analysis debunking the argument by (C & C) titled - Hawaii: Assisted Suicide in not already legal.

This is just another example of how (C & C) will spin the truth. Stephen Drake, the research analyst for the disability rights group Not Dead Yet refers to C & C as "Conflation and Con Jobs."

Read the opinion of the Attorney General here.

The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition expects that Compassion & Choices will encourage a physician to break the law in order to test their theory concerning the state of the Hawaii law or they will challenge the law in the court.

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