Reverence for Life
We hold life sacred from conception to natural death. We support policies and services that assist pregnant women to make life-affirming choices. We advocate for restrictions on the practice and public funding of abortion. We support stem cell research that does not destroy or clone human embryos. We support patient-focused, quality end-of-life care and oppose legalizing assisted suicide. We oppose the use of the death penalty.
Only one month after physician-assisted suicide became legal in California, a state agency is proposing to adopt emergency regulations that would transfer implementation and the potentially serious liabilities of the new law from state-run and funded agencies to the private sector.
The initiative to eliminate the use of California’s death penalty law has officially qualified for this November’s ballot.
The measure to revoke capital punishment in the state collected almost 405,000 signatures – well above the 365,000 verifiable signatures required for certification.
California, the most populous state in the country, has the largest population of death row inmates. Repealing the law would change the death sentences of almost 750 convicted inmates to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
(Spanish) The California Catholic Conference of Bishops, comprised of Bishops from the two archdioceses and 10 dioceses of California, issued the following statement on the legalization of physician-assisted suicide on June 9, 2016:
On June 9, 2016, in what the Bishops of California have called a “travesty of compassion,” physicians in California will legally be allowed to prescribe a lethal dose of drugs to a patient.
Despite bi-partisan opposition and being defeated in the regular legislative session, the End-of-Life Option Act was passed in a special, abbreviated session with limited hearings and altered committee membership.
This past Monday, one of our Advocacy Day bills, SB 1002 (Monning) was heard in the Senate Appropriations Committee. SB 1002 would require the California Department of Public Health to post a toll-free telephone number on its departmental website, on or before January 1, 2017, for the purpose of receiving and responding to questions in multiple languages about the End of Life Option Act, which is scheduled to take effect on June 9.
On Wednesday, the Senate Health Committee passed SB 1002 (Monning, D-Carmel) – End of Life Option Act: telephone number. This bill would provide a toll-free telephone number that Californians can call in order to receive information on physician-assisted suicide. It will now move to the Appropriations Committee.
Expansion Begins Before New Law Takes Effect
Without fanfare or announcement, Governor Brown’s proposed 2016 Budget recommends $2.3 million dollars to allow California to purchase lethal drugs for Medi-Cal patients who want their physician to help them commit suicide.
Edward “Ned” Dolejsi, executive director of the California Catholic Conference, issued the following statement on the close of the legislature’s special session and three months before the onset of physician-assisted suicide in California.
“In a few months, California will allow physicians to intentionally and legally assist people in committing suicide. This fundamental change in the doctor-patient relationship will have long range repercussions for the people of California – especially those who are most vulnerable.