Personal Injury, Serious Injury & Clinical Negligence

Coronation Street to tackle “Right to Die” storyline

Tony Nicklinson is a name synonymous with the “right to die” campaign.

In March 2012, Tony Nicklinson successfully obtained judgment from the High Court that he had an arguable case for declarations that it would not be unlawful, on the grounds of necessity, for a doctor to terminate or assist in the termination of his life, or alternatively that the present law of murder and/or of assisted suicide was incompatible with his right to respect for private family life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 (ECHR).

On Tuesday 19 June 2012 Mr Nicklinson began his hearing in the High Court. In August 2012 the High Court dismissed  the case stating that “It is not for the court to decide whether the law about assisted dying should be changed…..under our system of government these are matters for Parliament to decide.”

Sadly Mr Nicklinson passed away in July 2012 but the appeal was continued by his family and by another “right to die” campaigner, Mr Lamb.

On 1 August 2013 the Court of Appeal upheld the ruling of the High Court stating that Mr Nicklinson had not had the right to ask a doctor to end his life. The Court of Appeal reiterated the comments of the High Court, emphasising that any change in the law in respect of the right to die, would have to come about through Parliament.

It has now been confirmed that the controversial issues surrounding terminally ill patient’s “right to die” will once again be brought to the public’s attention when the matter is tackled in prime time soap, Coronation Street. Soap fans will see Coronation Street character, Hayley Cropper, decide that she wants to take her own life. Both sides of the ‘right to die’ debate are set to be shown as her husband, Roy Cropper, is against her decision.

The storyline comes at a time when the Assisted Dying Bill is being debated in Parliament. The first reading of the Bill took place in May 2013; however, the second reading of the Bill is yet to be scheduled.

We are able to offer advice and representation on cases involving consent to medical treatment and best interests decision making.

For further details please contact either Jess Connelly on 0345 209 1160 or John Boyle on 0345 209 1255.

Read our previous blogs on this topic by clicking on the links below: