Welcome to Ethical Rights

Latest news. Voluntary assisted dying survey

Ethical Rights will be surveying voluntary euthanasia advocates in 2020 on many of the ethical, policy/regulatory and individual considerations that arise or should arise in the public debate on voluntary assisted dying (VAD).  Respondents’ views will be sought on many issues, including for example, whether VAD should be a right for all adults, whether being terminally ill should be a necessary eligibility criterion for regulated VAD, and the role of doctors, if any, in assisted dying. 

The survey will also expand the VAD debate by seeking respondents’ views on whether there are any attributes that could make a person automatically ineligible for voluntary assisted dying, such as being a convicted criminal or having dementia. 

The survey is likely to be open to responses from August 2020. Some high level outcomes should be available, together with analysis, on this website by the end of 2020. 

Survey outcomes will be used to inform VAD organisations of members’ views, provide data for political and media debates, encourage further debate on VAD and form the basis of a longitudinal VAD study. 

David Swanton developed this survey and sought comment from colleagues in Exit (who encouraged the survey’s development) and colleagues from the many Dying with Dignity organisations in Australia and elsewhere. He would like to acknowledge the excellent advice and support provided by Dr Wendy Gunthorpe, Straight Talk Consulting, on the survey methodology. 

Ethical Rights Overview

Ethical Rights was established to challenge people to think more rationally about important ethical and science related issues. More people might then make better decisions about issues affecting themselves, other people and the world.

Public debate on issues ranging from euthanasia to discrimination to climate change has too often been ill-informed. Consider as an example, that some politicians have used religious ideology, unsupported by evidence, for rejecting the progressive and informed views that would improve the lives of individuals, the world's climate and betterment of human society. In any conflict between rights, the religious views of one group cannot be forced onto other groups. This follows from the observations that

  1. most people don't want others' religious views forced on them, and
  2. people should not treat others in ways that they would not like to be treated.

This website contains short articles and larger papers that address important issues. 

The Articles link includes some general and media contributions, such as Religion and Politics, which is critical of the mainly religion-linked objections to climate change and euthanasia policies, and Time for euthanasia to be regulated, which provides a strong case for legislated voluntary assisted dying. A comprehensive set of responses to Voluntary Euthanasia Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) addresses the most common questions that are asked of euthanasia advocates. The FAQs are structured according to the ERIC (Ethical, Regulatory, Individual Considerations) framework that has been developed by Ethical Rights. 

The Articles link also includes more detailed submissions, most often submitted to government inquiries, on issues including human rights, discrimination, equality, euthanasia, freedom of religion amongst others.  Papers are also provided on science matters ranging from fuel quality (Better Fuel for Cleaner Air) to human cloning. 

Ethical Rights also offers consultancy services on ethical and science-based issues.  

We hope you find the information on this site useful, challenging and stimulating.