As I contemplate my Christmas letter towards the end each year, I tend to look for an overarching theme – something that defined the year. 2017 was the year of the heart - as in cardiac events, and 2018 is the year of End of Life Choice. It started back in December 2017, on the night that the EOLC Bill passed its first reading. I was in Parliament that night. I listened as David Seymour presented the Bill, I listened to the “debate” which followed, and then the Speaker called for the vote. As the bells rang, I watched the MPs rise from their seats and head for one of two doors. Above one is carved the word Aye, and above the other Nay.
It really hit me then: these are the people we have to influence!
If you are reading this, and if you would say to yourself yes, we need this legislation, I ask: have you ever said that to a politician? Now is the time to say it, and say it again. And again. Start with your local electorate MP, and go on to the List MPs. On the Home page of this website click on get involved/tell your MP for a list of all names, electorates, email and postal addresses. Nothing fancy. Just a handwritten letter saying who you are and why you want this legislation, in your own words.
If a bad death is involved, be specific. The details make a difference. Think about it. You get a phone call telling you that someone has died, but you didn’t see how it happened. You make up pictures in your mind but you don’t know the real facts. Nor do most of the MPs. Most of them will never have been personally involved in a bad death. it is significant that both of the two previous attempts to get this legislation were initiated by MPs who either had a terminal illness themselves or a spouse who died grievously.
Finally, Ask for a commitment from the MP to whom you write, to vote Yes.
Go to it!