The citizens' convention in favor of "active assistance in dying"

The citizens' convention in favor of "active assistance in dying"

The approximately 180 participants in the citizens' convention on the end of life voted mostly in favor of changing the law for "active assistance in dying", Sunday during a vote at the Economic, Social and Environmental Council (Cese ).

After nearly three months of debate, 84% of citizens felt that the "end-of-life support framework" did not respond "to the different situations encountered", during a vote in several stages on "the guidelines for responding to the question of the Prime Minister" Elisabeth Borne.

To the question: "Should access to active assistance in dying be open?", 75% voted "yes", 19% voted "no", according to the results of the ballot broadcast live from the Cese , where the citizens' convention meets at the call of the government.

Regarding the terms of access to this aid in dying, 72% were in favor of assisted suicide, 66% in favor of euthanasia.

The 184 participants drawn by lot therefore unsurprisingly voted in favor of a change in the current legislation, which President Emmanuel Macron plans to change. At the beginning of January, a first informal and impromptu vote had indicated a movement in this direction.

Since 2016, the so-called Claeys Leonetti law has made it possible to go as far as “deep and continuous sedation” of certain patients until their death, without however making it possible to actively cause their death or to give them the means to do so.

"A turning point has been taken, it marks the end of the deliberation phase. There are still debates", declared after the vote Claire Thoury, responsible for organizing the convention, who will report on her detailed work on 19 March.

Some questions remain unanswered, in particular that of the conscience of people at the end of life.

During Sunday's session, citizens debated the issue of minors at length. At 56%, they decided that access to assisted suicide should also be open to them.

“Congratulations to all of you for restoring hope in this somewhat worrying democratic context,” greeted Claire Thoury before the assembly of citizens, promising that minority positions would be taken into account.

“We have several debates in the National Assembly which reflect a not very glorious image, here you have 184 citizens who are debating in a peaceful way”, she argued during a press conference.

"We have told the citizens that it is the politicians who will decide in the end, that it is not here that we decide but that we enlighten the public decision", explained the president of the governance committee of the convention. .

"To disregard at all" the guidelines of the convention "would still be bizarre", commented Claire Thoury, while the government, which is carrying out its own consultations at the same time, warned that it would probably not resume the conclusions as they stand. citizens.

The Editorial Board (with AFP)

On the same subject read also: 

Citizens' convention on the end of life: are the French really informed?

End of life: the Council of Christian Churches in France recalls its convictions

End of life: the response of French Protestant and Catholic leaders

End of life: “affirming the value of each human life” the evangelicals of France “denounce any act giving death”

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