Today, the New York Court of Appeals released its decision in the case of Myers v. Schneiderman. In this case, the plaintiffs sought to establish a “right” to physician-assisted suicide under the Constitution of the State of New York. In a 5-0 decision, the Court of Appeals has rejected the plaintiffs’ claims and has affirmed that the state’s existing laws against physician-assisted suicide are constitutional. Rev. Jason J. McGuire, Executive Director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, made the following remarks:
“All New Yorkers should cheer today’s decision in the case of Myers v. Schneiderman. Confronted with a controversial and emotionally charged case, the New York Court of Appeals has done the right thing in declining the plaintiffs’ invitation to legislate from the bench. The Court’s decision does three important things. First, it demonstrates respect for the Constitution of the State of New York. Nothing in our state’s Constitution in any way affirms physician-assisted suicide, and the Court acknowledged that reality. Second, the decision upholds the role of the Legislature as policymaker. Third, the decision recognizes that the state ‘has a significant interest in preserving life and preventing suicide, a serious public health problem.’”
Rev. McGuire concluded, “Today’s decision from the Court of Appeals will save lives. Now that this court battle is over, New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms looks forward to continued success in defeating efforts to pass physician-assisted suicide legislation. Our state can do better than physician-assisted suicide, and people living with terminal illnesses deserve better than assisted suicide.”
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