Ethical Review of Euthanasia in Jersey Disregards 'Indirect Conscientious Objection'

Country: United Kingdom

Date of incident: November 7, 2023

An ethical review by medical law experts has been conducted in Jersey to assess the implications that the approval of euthanasia, "Assisted Dying" (AD), would have on the island. While noting the necessity of several limitations to euthanasia based on ethical issues, the experts stated that conscientious objection should not be granted to everyone, excluding people not directly involved in the death, such as receptionists or drivers.

This assessment made on the Assisted Dying in Jersey Ethical Review Report  is problematic because of its narrow understanding of the freedom of conscience. Even the act of driving someone to a place where this person will get himself killed, can be a major concern for sombody's religious conscience. Disregarding this form of participation in the action of killing could potentially result in severe limitations of freedom of conscience of those indirectly involved in the act. In this sense, the Ethical Review may negatively influence this proposed legislation, which is expected to be discussed in the summer of 2024. 

Sources: gov.jeBBC

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash