Fraser Sutherland, CEO of Humanist Society Scotland, addresses a crowd in a blue suit infront of an HSS banner.

Humanist Society Scotland in the media on assisted dying

March 28, 2024

With Liam McArthur MSP’s assisted dying bill lodged at Holyrood and published on 28 March, we’ve been having our say in the media on what a new law could mean for Scotland.

We believe an assisted dying law for the terminally ill would bring choice and compassion at the end of life to thousands of Scots. That’s why we’ve been making our voice heard across the radio and print media, urging people to say yes to dignity and compassion, and to reject the religious scare-mongering that is surely coming.

Our CEO Fraser Sutherland talks assisted dying on BBC Radio Scotland

On the airwaves

Our CEO Fraser Sutherland spoke on BBC Radio Scotland Mornings (listen from 17:30). Fraser addressed concerns about misuse of the law. He pointed out the extensive safeguards baked into Liam’s draft legislation. He also pointed out the irony of opponents being happy to support the legal, voluntary starvation of people at the end of their life but not the use of lethal medication. Fraser was also quoted in news reports on Capital Scotland, Heart, Smooth, and Original 106 FM.

Fraser spoke again on BBC Radio Scotland during the Drivetime show, opposed by Dr. Gillian Wright. Fraser also appeared on LBC with Dr. Wright as an opponent. Introduced as a “medical ethics researcher” in both cases, Dr. Wright works for Our Duty of Care, part of the religious anti-assisted dying group Care Not Killing. Gillian regularly appears on conservative religious bills, including at a recent “culture of life” event which also opposed abortion. Here she appeared alongside Bishop John Keenan, who encourages protests outside abortion clinics, and Richard Lucas of the hard right Scottish Family Party. Last year Lucas gave an interview to fascist group Patriotic Alternative Scotland.

Fraser’s message on the lodging and publication of Liam McArthur’s assisted dying bill.

In print

We’ve also had our say in print media, including in The Guardian. Fraser debunked the myth of an inevitable “slippery slope” leading to more and more eligibility once assisted dying is legal. “Contrary to certain media narratives, we have seen many assisted dying laws similar to Liam McArthur’s bill (i.e. those that apply only to terminally ill people) introduced without any subsequent expansion.” Fraser reiterated that point in The Herald, stating “the ‘slippery slope’ is a mirage.” Fraser was also quoted in The Courier.

Tell your MSP the Time is Now for an Assisted Dying law

Please help us reach every MSP in Scotland to ask them to support Liam McArthur’s Assisted Dying bill in Scotland.

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