Rachel Pegler, 67, who previously worked as a community nurse and as a night sitter supporting terminally ill patients, is encouraging local people to join a new group in support of a campaign to allow terminally ill people to die with dignity. The group meets for the first time on Thursday 16th March at 6pm at the Pickard Street Community Centre in Warwick and anyone is welcome to attend.
Rachel, along with a group of people across Warwickshire, is supporting Dignity in Dying in calling for assisted dying to be legalised so that terminally ill people are given choice and control over their death. The group’s first meeting will involve hearing from a representative of Dignity in Dying and brainstorming ideas for campaigning in the local area.
The issue is a personal one for Rachel, whose husband Graham was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour. They met when she was just 19.
“He was diagnosed in January 2009 and passed away in March – he was 60 years old. We were devastated and just getting our heads round the diagnosis. It was such a shock as he was never ill. Having to deal with what he went through in his final weeks is something no dying patient and family should ever have to endure.
“My view is that it is my human right to choose how I wish to die. I have had strong views about assisted dying for a few years and recently got involved with Dignity in Dying. I feel like people like myself need to get involved – the law has to change.”
Dignity in Dying campaigns for a change in the law to allow terminally ill, mentally competent adults with less than six months to live to have the option of a safe, legal assisted death. There are 22 local groups around the country, of which Warwickshire is one of the newest, covering around 100 constituencies. The largest ever poll on assisted dying found that 82% of the public were in support of a change in the law.
Fran Hall, Campaigner Support Officer at Dignity in Dying, said:
“We believe that everyone has the right to die with dignity and have choice and control at the end of life, but sadly this is not the case for terminally ill people in this country. If you agree that this is unacceptable, please join us and come along to our first local meeting on the 16th – anyone is welcome.”
When: Thursday 16th March at 6.15pm
Where: Pickard Street Community Centre, Pickard Street, Warwick CV34 4PT
RSVP: For more information or to RSVP please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information please contact Ellie Ball, Media and Campaigns Officer at Dignity in Dying at email@example.com or 0207 479 7732.
Notes to Editor
Dignity in Dying campaigns for greater choice, control and access to services at the end of life. It advocates providing terminally ill adults with the option of an assisted death, within strict legal safeguards, and for universal access to high quality end-of-life care.