The group are rallying behind Noel Conway, a 67-year-old Shropshire man with terminal motor neurone disease who is currently fighting in the courts for his right to have an assisted death. They meet for the first time on Wednesday 10th May at 6.30pm in Shrewsbury Library and anyone is welcome to attend.
The new group is spearheaded by Julia Fenton, a 65 year-old mum of two who was born and bred in Shropshire and now lives in Church Stretton. Julia and her fellow group members are 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 with involve hearing more about Noel Conway’s case and the wider campaign, as well as the opportunity to brainstorm ideas for campaigning in the local area.
Explaining why he chose to take on this legal case, Noel said:
“I know I am going to die, but how and when should be up to me. To have the option of an assisted death available in this country would provide me and countless others with great reassurance and comfort. It would allow me to decide when I am ready to go, rather than be forced into a premature death by travelling to Dignitas at great emotional and financial cost, or to suffer a traumatic, drawn out death at home.”
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 currently 26 local groups around the country, of which Shropshire is one of the newest, covering around 100 constituencies across the UK. 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 for Noel and other terminally ill people, this is not the case.
“Noel is nobly sacrificing his time and energy to fight not only for his own rights, but for those of all dying people. Join us in rallying behind Noel – come along to our meeting on the 10th to learn more about the campaign and how you can help. Together we can make change happen and give terminally ill people the dignity they deserve.”
When: Wednesday 10th May 2017, arrive at 6.15pm for a 6.30pm start
Where: The Hobbs Room, Shrewsbury Library, Castle Gates, Shrewsbury SY1 2AS
RSVP: Email 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.