LifeSiteNews 18 Sept 2013
Top euthanasia advocate Philip Nitschke has taken partial credit for the increase in the suicide rate among elderly men in New Zealand that was revealed in recently released statistics. According to the new statistics, the average suicide rate was 12.10 per 100,000 across the population for the year ending June 2013, but the rate for men aged 85 years plus was 31.38 per 100,000. While the total number of suicides among 85+ men only amounted to nine for the year, the increase has sparked concern in the country, with Chief Coroner Judge Neil MacLean saying that more research is needed to determine the cause.
…Exit International, the group founded by euthanasia and assisted suicide advocate Dr Philip Nitschke, said it was not suprised by the news, stating in a press release, “Exit has also been instruments (sic) in providing elderly New Zealanders with supplies of MaxDog nitrogen.” “As a society we should not be alarmed by this trend,” said Nitschke, “and taking steps to prevent access to new developments in end of life strategies or end of life drugs would be counterproductive, forcing people to use undignified and often ineffective methods”. Professor Emeritus David Richmond, spokesperson for Euthanasia Free New Zealand, called Exit International’s provision of information and products to commit suicide an “un-neighbourly contribution to the suicide rate.” He also expressed concern that in order for any such deaths to look natural, someone would have to assist in the suicide.
An End of Life Choice Bill is currently in the ballot box in the country. If it were to be drawn and then passed, anyone over the age of 18 could obtain permission to end their lives due to “unbearable suffering”.