After decades of working to bring Death with Dignity to California, we are now a mere 91 days from implementation of the End of Life Option Act. With the close today of the special legislative session, the implementation clock starts ticking. The End of Life Option Act will take effect on June 9, allowing qualified terminally ill Californians to control the way they die.
Our Work Is Not Yet Done
The Golden State joins Oregon, Washington, and Vermont in providing peace of mind for all those who wish this to be an option. It’s both a sobering and exciting event. We are all so proud of the work we have done to provide this basic end-of-life decision for dying patients in California. At the same time, we recognize that our work is not yet done. While opponents mobilize to hamper the End of Life Option Act in the courts before it’s even in effect, we are working to implement this new law safely and to provide guidance and comfort for those who choose to walk this final journey.
That’s why the Death With Dignity National Center has joined with California Senators Bill Monning and Lois Wolk and Assemblymember Susan Talamantes Eggman to introduce legislation that will establish a toll-free information line for the End of Life Option Act. Senate Bill 1002, End of Life Option Telephone Number Act, will mandate the California Department of Public Health to create a direct telephone line where knowledgeable staff will inform Californians how to navigate through the legal and medical requirements of the new law.
With Your Help
Just as we could not have succeeded in passing the California End of Life Option Act without you, we cannot work to implement the new law without your support. Will you chip in $25 to make sure the California End of Life Option Act works as intended?
As we move closer to implementation, we will also make sure the law is protected from efforts to change or repeal it. It took three years from its passage for Oregon’s law to go into effect and twelve to fend off all the court challenges, including at the U.S. Supreme Court. Already in California opponents have tried to put a repeal measure on this year’s November ballot—they failed but they are already mobilizing for court battles.
With your help, we can continue to protect the law, pass the information line bill, and assure that those patients requesting to use the law are able to do so in a safe and compassionate way. Please chip in $25 to support these efforts.