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Te Karere: ‘There is danger in this legislation’ – euthanasia Bill threat to Māori, says lawyer

“We’ve just done a massive fundraising campaign for Mike King’s [Gumboot] campaign, and here we are now willing to bring in legal suicide basically? There is a danger in this legislation, and it comes with irreversible, irremediable, and terminal. You cannot determine what irreversible and irremediable is. I qualify under that, and I’ve still got a good lot of life left in me. Many of us would qualify under that. Depression after your husband or wife dies – you qualify under that. In Oregon, 63% of those that [received assisted suicide] were from poor backgrounds, who were on State insurance, and were refused treatment that could have kept their lives going well. We do currently have a public health system [in New Zealand'] that is currently rationing certain things like dialysis – and who are the biggest recipients of dialising? Māori and Pacific peoples.”

Dr Huhana Hickey MNZM (Ngāti Tahinga, Tainui, Ngai Tai) is a Crown Director and consultant. She is a scholar of disabilities research and legal theory, and has research interests in the human rights of people from marginal backgrounds and the consequences of discrimination and social oppression. Huhana sits on the New Zealand Human Rights Review Tribunal and is Chair of the Auckland Council Disability Strategic Advisory Panel. Huhana takes part in the #DefendNZ movement out of a concern that societies’ prejudices about disability and the deficiency of support currently available for people with disabilities could have a deadly effect should the End of Life Choice Bill be passed. She speaks in documentaries #DefendNZ have launched this year around the Bill including ‘Choice is a relative term’ featuring Kylee Black (below).

Watch Kylee’s documentary in widescreen and read her complete story here.

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