Opponents of California legislation allowing doctors to prescribe lethal drugs for the terminally ill are launching a drive for a referendum to overturn the law.
Brown’s office tweeted a photo target=”_blank”} Sunday of the governor signing the bill on a Sacramento beer bike’s bar with his wife, Anne Gust Brown, and their two dogs.
He added he wouldn’t deny that right to others.
“I do not know what I would do if I were dying in prolonged and excruciating pain”, Brown wrote in a statement released to the press. The bill makes California the fifth USA state to allow assisted suicide after Montana, Oregon, Washington and Vermont.
This year more than half of states have proposed bills to legalize a few form of aid-in-dying but California’s is the first to become law, according to the Death With Dignity National Center in Portland, OR.
The San Francisco Chronicle reports on the rules for terminally ill patients who are eligible for a physician’s help to end their life.
The bill includes requirements that patients be physically capable of taking the medication themselves, that two doctors approve it, that the patients submit several written requests and that there be two witnesses, one of whom is not a family member. They need to have less than six months to live and the statement should be supported by two physicians, and they should also be mentally healthy to take the decision.
Last year, 29-year-old Californian Brittany Maynard, dying from an aggressive brain tumor, moved to Oregon to avail herself of the law there.
And once we establish in law that a few lives are not as valuable as others – not worth “paying for” – what will be next for California?
California’s experience will influence what happens in other states, because so much data will be generated in a state of 39 million people, predicted Eighmey, a former Oregon state legislator who was instrumental in getting that state’s legislation passed.
The campaign for the right-to-die legislature has been going on in California for years with strong opposition from religious and disability rights groups. In 1992, voters rejected a proposal that would have granted physicians the right to give a lethal injection to a patient.
Female workers in California are getting new tools to challenge gender-based wage gaps under legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown.
In New York, the New York Catholic Conference is lobbying against assisted suicide legislation. “For this reason, and because we fear the potential impact of this law on vulnerable populations, our Church vocally opposed it”.
For instance, under current law a woman who works at a facility in Oakland could not necessarily compare her salary to that of a man who holds the same position for the same company at a facility in Berkeley, proponents said.