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Defending life from the moment of conception

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Call for euthanasia criticised by disability group

3 August 2005

Call for euthanasia criticised by disability group The call by Kelly Taylor, a woman who has GUCH (Grown-up Congenital Heart, or Eisenmenger's Syndrome) to have euthanasia legalised has been criticised by disability rights group No Less Human (NLH). "What Mrs Taylor really needs is a treatment that will remedy her suffering - that is clear from her statement quoted by the BBC. One wonders why she was taken off the waiting list for a transplant when for eight years she was considered a candidate for one, and why doctors seem to have given up on her. Even if a transplant is no longer possible, it is likely that some sort of palliative treatment could help Ms. Kelly. Euthanasia is a despairing option to the challenges of disability, and making it legal would militate against positive approaches which can help people with disabling conditions to make the most of their lives. What Mrs. Taylor actually needs is help to re-establish a sense of the value of her own life", said Alison Davis of NLH, who has several severe disabling conditions. "It is understandable that people in Mrs. Taylor's position should feel despairing, but it is an affront to the rights of other vulnerable people to present the situation as if she were a victim of archaic laws. "Many more people would become victims (in a more literal sense) of the law if the right to life of people with disabilities were undermined in the way Mrs Taylor suggests. What suffering people really need is not euthanasia, but help to live with dignity, until they die naturally," Alison Davis concluded. For further information, or to contact Alison Davis, please call +44 (0)7939 178719. NLH is a group within SPUC, the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) 020 7222 5845.

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