Whilst the Citizens’ Convention on the end of life is to begin tomorrow, Alliance VITA stands ready to provide its expertise and convictions, with determination and guilelessly.
In the context of the participative process decided by the French President, the 150 citizens appointed by drawing lots will have to answer the following question: “Is the framework for care during the end of life suited to the different situations encountered or should some changes be introduced?”
Claiming its “neutrality” the governance committee of the Convention specifies that the citizens will decide who to consult and how to conclude on the basis of the documentary data provided to them. This documentation uses the phrase “active assistance to die”, considered by the national ethics consultation Committee in its notice No. 139, which is far from insignificant.
The citizens’ convention must submit their findings in March after nine 3-day sessions. However certain factual data which could be relevant to their thinking will not be made available, in particular the report on palliative care requested by the Government Accounting Office, which is scheduled for June 2023.
Whilst claiming “an appeased debate” to which the citizens’ convention would be a guarantee, the powers that be, by deciding – in a difficult sanitary and social context – to reconsider the “end of life framework”, give the impression of having already decided to cancel the prohibition to kill.
Tugdual Derville, the spokesman for Alliance VITA states: “The debate in itself is far from neutral inasmuch as it overturns a founding element of community life. Questioning the factor which links us together in society, the prohibition to kill, immediately poses a threat on certain people. In our “SOS Fin de vie” (SOS End of Life) hotline service, we currently hear people suffering mentally who ask us if we could end their days. We are also concerned to see this debate focussed around the theme of “active assistance to die” whereas there are many other questions to be answered on the subject of the end of life: Where are we going to die? Will we be properly supported? Will there be adequate pain relief? How to fund home care? How to support local carers? All these questions and many others, must not be hidden under the bushel of euthanasia or assisted suicide.”
In the debate which is being launched, Alliance VITA will continue to defend its opposition to euthanasia and assisted suicide and will concentrate its campaign on insisting on better accompaniment for the aged and the end of life:
- For the enactment of a law to govern old age and autonomy,
- For palliative care to be made accessible everywhere in France,
- For the prevention of suicide with absolutely no exceptions,
- For the prevention of the social death of the aged,
- For truly effective solidarity between generations.