15 April 2016
The election of Members to the Scottish Parliament will take place throughout Scotland on Thursday, 5th May.
The new Parliament presents an opportunity to continue the momentum towards a change in the law in Scotland on assisted dying. To do that, we need to ensure that future MSPs know the strength of feeling on the issue and know that a majority of Scots want to see law change in the next Parliament.
For that, we need your help.
You will undoubtedly receive election literature from your candidates, so please respond by asking them for their views on assisted dying.
The details of your constituency and regional candidates can be found at Who Can I Vote For? If you are not yet registered to vote, find out how to Register to vote — remember that the minimum voting age is 16.
A full list of candidates will also be available from your local authority or council in the run-up to the election.
What to say when you write
Please make sure to ask your MSP candidates whether they would support (in principle) legislation in the Scottish Parliament to allow for Assisted Dying.
You may also want to raise some of the following points:
- Explain why you personally support giving dying people choice at the end of life, perhaps giving examples from your own life as to why a change in the law matters to you.
- According to a Populus poll in March last year, 83% of Scots want to see a change in the law to allow assisted dying for terminally ill, mentally competent, adults.
- The same poll found that 54% of Scots would be more likely to support a politician who supported assisted dying compared to just 9% who would be less likely.
After the election
If you are unable to write to your candidates before the election, please contact those who are newly elected after 5th May and ask if they will support legislation on this topic.
You will be able to find your MSP and their email address on the Scottish Parliament website. You can write to your MSP directly at:
…or use the convenient Write to Them website after the election. All you have to do is enter your postcode below, click on Submit and you will be taken directly to the Write To Them website where you can enter your message. Please see their FAQs for some helpful information and advice on writing to your representative.
It’s important for us to know as much as possible about where MSPs, both re-elected and new, stand on assisted dying, so if you receive responses from your candidates (or MSPs) please share them with us by forwarding them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to:
Friends at the End
Kirkhill Office Park
Unit 2, Office 7
Friends at the End continue to work closely with the Scottish Parliament to move this issue forward and are working in the background to establish a Cross Party Group on End-of-Life issues with our MSPs, when the new Parliament is formed.
We will keep you updated with this.