Disabled man launches legal bid for euthanasia
9 January 2017
Mr Conway's bid to legalise euthanasia through the courts is being supported by Dignity in Dying. Image: Annabel Moeller
Noel Conway, a retired lecturer with motor neurone disease, is seeking a judicial review in the high court of the ban on assisted suicide.
Mr Conway, 67, says he fears becoming "entombed" in his body as his muscles gradually weaken, and wants a doctor to be able to prescribe a lethal dose when his health deteriorates.
Assisted suicide is prohibited by section 2(1) of the Suicide Act 1961. Mr Conway's challenge, if the court hears it, could lead to euthanasia being introduced through the courts. The case will be the first High Court challenge to the existing law since the attempt to introduce assisted suicide through Parliament in 2015 failed.
The bid is being supported by the euthanasia lobby group Dignity in Dying.
Baroness Campbell, who has spinal muscular atrophy, and who founded the organisation Not Dead Yet, said that the current law was already compassionate and changing it would be "highly dangerous".
She told the BBC: "If the law was changed it would feed into society's fear that being very disabled like me is a state worse than death.
"We already have to fight to live; a right to die would be a huge and frightening burden."
The case comes as the American Psychiatric Association has spoken out against euthanasia for those who are not terminally ill.
Pro-Life group's ads banned by Canadian judge because they aren't "welcoming"
A pro-life group in Canada has been banned from placing adverts on buses because it's message was deemed "not safe and welcoming".
The judge also found that the ads the Canadian Centre for Bioethical Reform wanted to run might cause "psychological harm to women who have had an abortion".
The advert shows (non-graphic) images of babies in the womb at 7 and 16 weeks gestation, with the words "Abortion kills children".