Suicide in question

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I am writing regarding Peter Kearney’s opinion piece about assisted suicide (Friends of The Scotsman, 31 July).

While I recognise that Mr Kearney is engaging in a difficult and emotive issue, I was disappointed to find his article so inaccurate and misleading.

There has been no call from Together or our members for a “right-to-die” law for children. We take no position on assisted suicide, nor on whether children should have a right to assisted suicide.

Our response to the Scottish Parliament’s consultation on the Assisted Suicide (Scotland) Bill simply stated that when the issue is being discussed, the rights of children should be taken into account – just as they should be when other important matters that affect them are being considered.

This is extremely important given that the proposed legislation could impact on children who have parents, carers or siblings with terminal illnesses or on children and young people who themselves have a terminal illness.

It is disappointing that Mr Kearney chose to put forward such a factually incorrect article on such a complex and sensitive issue.

It is regrettable that neither he, nor The Scotsman, made any effort to contact Together to establish the facts before publication.

Families and children living with terminal illness face enough trauma and challenges without people engaging in such ill-informed speculation and debate through the media.

On behalf of Together (Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights), I request assurance that any future articles are properly researched and factually correct. We would be very pleased 
to provide additional information or to respond to any 
queries.

Juliet Harris

Together – Scottish 
Alliance for Children’s Rights

Haymarket Terrace

Edinburgh

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