On 23rd May 2019 Baroness Meacher asked the Government “what assessment they have made of whether the threat of prosecutions under the Suicide Act 1961 is causing suffering to mentally competent, terminally ill people at the end of their lives.” The Bishop of Winchester, Rt Revd Tim Dakin, asked a follow-up question:
The Lord Bishop of Winchester: My Lords, in a recent Royal College of Physicians survey just over 80% of palliative care doctors opposed the assisted suicide law reforms. The Secretary of State for Justice is committed to meeting organisations that support changes. Can the Minister assure this House that the views of those opposing such reforms, out of due concern for vulnerable patients placed at risk of abuse, have been and will be equally considered?
Lord Keen of Elie: I can give the right reverend Prelate that assurance. Indeed, we have had recent contact with some organisations representing the very parties to which he refers. They will be given an equal opportunity to express their views on this difficult matter.