Noel Conway, who is seeking the right to have his life ended with medical assistance, has failed in the Court of Appeal which today rejected his judicial review. Conway, who has motor meurone disease, said he intends to take the case to the Supreme Court. ‘I am naturally disappointed by today’s judgment, though it was not unexpected,’ he said.
Conway’s legal team and the campaign group Dignity in Dying stressed that the Court of Appeal judgment included points with which they are pleased. In a statement issued after judgment, they noted it, ‘reaffirmed the High Court’s previous judgment that the courts have the authority to make a declaration of incompatibility between the 1961 Suicide Act (which criminalised assisting someone to die) and human rights legislation. This is a significant victory in developing the law in this area and was strongly contested by the government’.
Conway’s solicitor, Irwin Mitchell partner Yogi Amin, added: ‘There was a range of evidence before the court which addressed the safeguards that are available to provide an alternative to a blanket ban on assisted dying.
‘Noel would like the choice to be able to die with dignity. He has proposed a new legal framework for terminally ill people with robust safeguards. This would be in place of the current blanket ban on assisted dying. The world has changed phenomenally in the past few decades, with many medical advances, but the law on assisted dying for those who are terminally ill hasn’t changed for more than 50 years.’
The case was brought against the Ministry of Justice.