DRNC Board Member Dr Mary Jo Speer
In an interview with the Spanish language newspaper, La Noticia, DRNC Board Member explained her mission of explaining the need for Medical Aid in Dying Legislation In North Carolina Mary Jo explained :
” Our goal is to have North Carolina join the other states in the United States that offer their citizens the option to end their lives peacefully and without suffering, when death is unavoidable “
Mary Jo outlined the rigorous criteria required before an individual is eligible to apply for MAID in those 11 jurisdictions in the US where the law is in effect. She distinguished between euthanasia, allowed in Canada, several European countries and Australia and New Zealand vs MAID in the US.
” We do not use this word (euthanasia) , because it comes from the Greek, which means good death, but the problem with this is that if a person wants to be euthanized, the doctor is responsible for giving them the medication and the person dies, but with medical assistance in dying (MAID), the person has to be able to take the medication on their own ,” she explained.
Mary Jo also made clear that MAID, contrary to the obfuscating language of certain opponents, is not the same as suicide, an almost always lonely and bloody and guilt-ridden end of life alterative.
” There are institutions that oppose this, such as the Catholic Church and Republican legislators , who are against it, because they preserve Christian traditions and believe that it is God who should take people when it is their time. They also accuse us of supporting suicide and this is not true. We do not legalize suicide, nor would we raise this option for people with disabilities , “she added.
Mary Jo travels throughout the State explaining the workings of, and answering questions concerning, MAID before a diverse audience of interested parties and organisations.