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WHEREAS, medical knowledge and technology make possible the mechanical
prolongation of life; and
WHEREAS, such prolongation may cause unnecessary suffering and/or loss of
dignity while providing little or nothing of benefit to the individual; and
WHEREAS, such procedures have an impact upon a health-care system in which
services are limited and are inequitably distributed; and
WHEREAS, differences exist among people over religious, moral, and legal
implications of administering aid in dying when an individual of sound mind has
voluntarily asked for such aid; and
WHEREAS, obstacles exist within our society against providing support for an
individual's declared wish to die; and
WHEREAS, many counselors, clergy, and health-care personnel value
prolongation of life regardless of the quality of life or will to live;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: That the Unitarian Universalist Association calls
upon its congregations and individual Unitarian Universalists to examine
attitudes and practices in our society relative to the ending of life, as well
as those in other countries and cultures; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: That Unitarian Universalists reaffirm their support
for the Living Will, as declared in a 1978 resolution of the General Assembly,
declare support for the Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, and seek
assurance that both instruments will be honored; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: That Unitarian Universalists advocate the right to
self-determination in dying, and the release from civil or criminal penalties of
those who, under proper safeguards, act to honor the right of terminally ill
patients to select the time of their own deaths; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: That Unitarian Universalists advocate safeguards
against abuses by those who would hasten death contrary to an individual's
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED: That Unitarian Universalists, acting through their
congregations, memorial societies, and appropriate organizations, inform and
petition legislators to support legislation that will create legal protection
for the right to die with dignity, in accordance with one's own choice.
For more information contact web @ uua.org.
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Last updated on Wednesday, August 24, 2011.
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