Justice Patricia Courtney’s decision today, to discharge without conviction Evans Mott, for assisting his wife to commit suicide, sets a dangerous precedent for future cases of assisted suicide in New Zealand.
While Mr Mott was not actually present when his wife Rosie Mott died, he pleaded guilty in May to assisting in her suicide by acquiring information about euthanasia and providing the equipment necessary for her to carry out the act. In pleading guilty he accepted responsibility for the role he played in his wife’s death. Now, he is able to walk away with no consequences to his actions.
The so-called “right to die” advocates are very excited about the outcome of this case. Today’s decision will also influence politician’s thoughts on Maryann Street’s “End of Life Choices” Bill which is awaiting its first reading.
Family Life International NZ believes that Justice Courtney has made a grave error of judgment in making this decision. She has opened the door for other’s to assist in suicide and not suffer any consequences. This decision also flies the face of New Zealander’s concern over the high suicide rate in our country.
It is unbelievable that less than two weeks ago New Zealand was horrified at our very high suicide rates, today Justice Courtney is saying that it is okay to assist someone in suicide because they would have done it anyway. Would we stand by a teen and say ‘go ahead kill yourself, your life is so miserable, here’s the pills, razor or rope to do it’?
People who are suffering, whether it be mentally or physically, need to be cared for with true compassion, not a false compassion which sees assisted suicide or euthanasia as the answer.
Family Life International NZ believes that this decision today is a very dangerous move that has led New Zealand one step closer to legalising assisted suicide and euthanasia. Any further moves towards these ends will surely show up just how selfish a society we truely are.