Do you think assisted dying should be legal in the UK? Poll of the week

Dame Esther Rantzen is campaigning for assisted dying to be legalised in the UK, but some fear the change would have unintended consequences.

Yahoo UK's poll of the week lets you vote and indicate your strength of feeling on one of the week's hot topics. After 72 hours the poll closes and, each Friday, we'll publish and analyse the results, giving readers the chance to see how polarising a topic has become and if their view chimes with other Yahoo UK readers.

File photo dated 21/03/22 of Dame Esther Rantzen who has said that helping to ease the loneliness of the elderly is
Dame Esther Rantzen has signed up to Switzerland's Dignitas in case the "law doesn't change in time" in the UK. (Alamy)

Dame Esther Rantzen has revealed what she would like for her last meal before ending her life through an assisted dying clinic.

The 83-year-old former journalist and presenter, who was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2023, said she would like a final dinner of caviar and champagne, having signed up Swiss assisted dying company Dignitas.

Rantzen told LBC she'd registered as a precaution “if the law does not change in time” in the UK. She added: “I’d like to fly off to Zurich with my nearest and dearest. Have a fantastic dinner the night before. I’d love caviar, if possible, and the fact that it doesn’t always agree with me doesn’t matter, does it?

“I could even have champagne, which I’m deeply allergic to. Then the next day, go to this rather unappealing place where they do it. Listen to a favourite piece of music, say goodbye to everybody."

Rantzen has campaigned for a parliamentary debate and a free vote to legalise assisted dying with “built-in precautions to protect the interests of the person”. A petition calling for a vote, launched by the Dignity in Dying campaign group, fetched 120,000 signatures in about three weeks.

The group's chief executive Sarah Wootton, said: “Under the current law, dying people are forced to choose between suffering, suicide or Switzerland... we know that there is a better, kinder, safer way."

On the other side of the debate, Care not Killing CEO Dr Gordon Macdonald warned of unintended consequences.

He warned it would mean a "dramatic change" in how doctors and nurses care for people and would "place huge pressure, real or perceived on terminally ill and disabled people to end their lives exactly as we see in the handful of places that have legalised assisted suicide or euthanasia".

Come back on Friday to read the results and analysis via the link below.

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