The End of Life Choice Act looks likely to come into force if a random poll of lunchtime shoppers on Warkworth’s Queen Street is any indication. Shoppers were asked if they thought terminally ill people should be given help to die if they requested it. Most shoppers emphatically said “yes”, with two undecided but leaning towards “yes” and only two emphatically saying “no”. Most shoppers preferred that their full name and photograph not be printed, perhaps reflecting the sensitivity of the issue.
Do you think terminally ill people should be given help to die if they request it? Why do you think this way?
Yes. I think there are circumstances where with all the best intentions you cannot control the pain. But it’s a hard choice, especially if the person can’t take the medication themselves. It’s a big thing to ask the doctors and nurses to do that – Anon
Absolutely. I don’t think anyone should have to suffer. Death is imminent anyway, so why not get over the agony, rather than having to have people feed you, and clean you and all that sort of stuff? – Grant Smith, Snells Beach
Yes. I’m a great believer in palliative care but there are situations where life becomes so unpleasant that it’s worth a person being able to ask for it to be ended. I appreciate it’s difficult for someone coming from a medical point of view. Doctors are trained to save lives, and it goes against the grain – John
Yes. It’s everyone’s choice, it’s their own life. My father was like that. He was in a lot of pain, and to see someone in agony like that and prolong his life? It just wasn’t fair – Anon
I’ve really not fully made up my mind. I’m leaning towards “yes”, but it would really depend on the safeguards – Tania
I think so, but I am not entirely sure. I guess people should have a choice. Yes, if you are really suffering you should have a choice, but I know it is complicated – Sarah
Totally. I have just been through it with my mother. She was terminally ill – the usual story it was cancer. She did not want to die, but in the end she did not want to live either – Sue
Yes. So long as it is all done properly. For example, a person can’t be forced to end their life by their family because they are a burden. But if a person is definitely dying and in pain then they should have the choice to end it – Blair Fraser, Sandspit
No. I don’t believe in wilful termination. It’s not our decision to make. I really appreciate it’s hard for family and friends to see their loved one’s suffer, and it should be made as comfortable as possible with pain relief medication – Chris Mackay, Sandspit
Yes. I don’t think anyone should suffer needlessly in this day and age, as long as appropriate safeguards are in place – Anon