Lisa M. Krieger
August 18, 2015

The proposal, modeled after Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act, is almost identical to the previous version: It would allow doctors to prescribe lethal doses of drugs to mentally competent, terminally ill patients.

But it has been inserted into the special legislative session on health care funding, and, therefore, bypasses the Assembly Health Committee where it was held after concerns were raised.

“This important issue merits careful consideration,” said Deborah Hoffman, a spokeswoman for the governor. “The process already well underway with the two-year bill, SB 128, is more appropriate than the special session.”

“This is a heavy-handed attempt to force through a bill that could not get any traction at all in committee,” said Marilyn Golden, co-chair of the Californians Against Assisted Suicide Coalition and senior policy analyst with Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund. “It’s one thing to run roughshod over the normal committee and legislative process to jam through a district bill, but to do that on what is literally a life-and-death issue is clearly abusive, and should concern all Californians. That should be truly frightening to those on MediCal and subsidized health care, who quite logically fear a system where prescribing suicide pills could be elevated to a treatment option.”

California legislators revive right-to-die bill

Organizations mentioned/involved: Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF)
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