Media Release 17th October
Right to Life believes that it was reprehensible and a deadly threat to the common good for the Wellington coroner Ian Smith to request that Parliament again consider legislation to allow for euthanasia. That is, to allow doctors to kill their patients or assist in their suicide. It is of great concern that a Coroner should be advocating a culture of death with the murder of the vulnerable.
This request followed an inquest into the suicide of a Mrs Gluyas an 85 year old women who committed suicide in Wellington in August 2011. She lived alone and suffered from arthritis. Her tragic death highlights the loneliness of many elderly people.
The role of the Coroner is to establish when, where, how and why a death happened, and also to work out whether anything can be done differently that might prevent similar deaths in the future. If so, they make recommendations. A coroner speaks for the dead to protect the living.
A coroner has a statutory duty to ensure that the deceased is not a victim of a crime.