On October 20, 2016, the New Jersey State Assembly approved the Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill Act ("The Act") in a bipartisan 41-28 vote. The Act would provide the option of medical aid in dying for terminally ill residents. The bill will now be presented before the State Senate.
Under The Act, a terminally ill, mentally capable adult with fewer than six months to live would have the option to request a life-ending medication. This issue resonates nationwide. A Washington, D.C. council panel advanced a similar bill in early October, and an aid in dying initiative is slated on the Colorado ballot this November. Medical aid in dying has already been authorized in California, Montana Oregon, Vermont and Washington.
Porzio Governmental Affairs client Compassion and Choices, the nation's oldest and most active non-profit organization dedicated to expanding choice and the end of life, is an advocate of The Act. According to Ethan Andersen, field organizer for Compassion & Choices, “Again and again, the people of New Jersey have indicated that they stand firmly behind providing their terminally ill neighbors with a humane, medical option to reduce unbearable suffering as the end draws near. We are gratified that the members of the Assembly heard our voices, and have helped this bill move one step closer to becoming law.”
To learn more about Compassion & Choices and this issue, please click here.