“Poll couldn’t be clearer” majority support assisted dying law change in Jersey

Picture of the states assembly and Jennifer Bridge former states member handing an open letter to the Chief Minister on assisted dying
The leader of Jersey’s Assisted Dying Action Group handed an open letter to the Chief Minister urging the States to press ahead with reform.Credit: ITV Channel

The majority of islanders support the legalisation of assisted dying in Jersey according to new research seen exclusively by ITV News.

A poll found 61 percent supported a law change to give mentally competent, terminally ill residents of Jersey the option of assisted dying.

In response to the poll 51 percent were “strongly” in favour, while 10 percent said they would “somewhat” support the move.

It comes as States members are set to debate a proposal to allow terminally ill adults who have lived on Jersey for 12 months to have the option to end their lives with medical assistance.

Sarah Wootton, Chief Executive of Dignity in Dying, the campaign group which commissioned the poll said: “This latest poll couldn’t be clearer: the citizens of Jersey are calling out for law change on assisted dying.”

She added: “This historic debate is a critical opportunity for States Members to do the right thing and pave the way for a safer, kinder, more compassionate law for dying people.”

However, the issue has sparked heated debate on both sides, with protestors expected to gather outside the States Assembly ahead of the debate on Tuesday 21 May.

Those in support of legalisation have handed an open letter with more than 3,100 signatures to Chief Minister Lyndon Farnham.

It urges the States to press ahead with reform without further delay, after members voted overwhelmingly to legalise assisted dying in principle in November 2021.