March 15, 2022
This Issue's Contents

1000 by November!
Legislative Update
Kem's Open Office

A North Carolina Quadriplegic Speaks up about MAID

Donate for Dignity & Your Gift will be Matched!
1000 by November!
by Dwight Moore, Ph.D., Chair of Arizona End of Life Options

The legislative session is nearly over and we are disappointed. We submitted two bills with two sponsors. Those bills got into the Health and Human Services committees of the Senate and House but did not get discussed. The two chairs of those committees, Senators Barto and Representative Osbourne, have been clear that they do not support Medical Aid in Dying, despite the fact that 60% of Arizona voters do support it with only 13% opposed. Our AZELO action teams made a number of valiant efforts to influence the legislature and the committees in January and February.

In addition to legislative activities, we are adding education and recruitment actions. Our Advisory Council, made up of leaders from a number of other states which have passed MAID bills, strongly recommends that we “build the base,” that is, grow the number of action team constituents who can educate the Arizona public. In the 2022 Arizona poll, 27% of Arizona residents did not know whether they support MAID or not, so now is our opportunity to teach and recruit. Imagine that in November we have 1000 action team members who are ready to vote for legislators who support MAID and vote against those who do not. Hence, 1000 by November. Then, further imagine 1000 constituents advocating for MAID when the legislature reconvenes in January of 2023.

Currently, we have 300 Action Team Members signed up. In order to get to 1000, we will be providing you with explicit instructions and materials to get to 1000. Additionally, throughout the summer we will be sending action alerts to conduct educational and recruitment activities. Remember, the overall goals are to educate the public, build our base, and support legislators who believe in MAID.

According to an ancient proverb, “it takes a village.” We need to build a village of supporters of MAID. I recognize that our lives feel upside down occasionally with Covid 19, the war in Ukraine, mixed economic news, etc. Also, anticipating the future is difficult, even in the best of times. I am clear that when I am in my last months of life, I want to maintain some sense of autonomy and dignity. While that may be some time in the distance, I have to act now to die with dignity. So, from me, your chair, and the Steering Committee, please join us in getting to 1000 in November!

Legislative Update
by Leesa Stevens, Legislative Advocacy Lead

With our medical aid in dying bills, HB2762 and SB1486 Terminally Ill Individuals, End of Life Options, not advancing out of either the House or Senate Health committees, our 2022 legislative campaign comes to an end this month. We are disappointed, but not terribly surprised given the majority leadership in the legislature remained unchanged from 2020, as our bills did not advance then either. All bills move, or die, primarily based on the positions of majority legislative leaders. Unfortunately, those in power the last two years were not supportive of our issue. 

The good news is that with an election before the 2023 legislative session many of those in leadership positions may be new. Many current legislators are retiring, or running for other offices. With the new redistricting lines some of our unsupportive legislators are running against each other. All legislators are up for reelection, and we will know who the candidates will be in April, which will give us both an opportunity and challenge to get our word out to those running to represent us at the State Capitol.

Our new election campaign will begin late spring ... please join us in spreading the word to those seeking our votes!

Kem's Open Office
by Kem Ellis, Volunteer Coordinator

Our AZELO action team members are on the move--literally! As a result of the current redistricting of Arizona's legislative districts our action teams are being reorganized as action team members are being reassigned to their new legislative districts.

At the same time our Action Team leaders are preparing to welcome their new team members and setting priorities for action team activities for the rest of the year.

To learn more about these exciting changes, to find out about your new action team, or to just catch up on the latest AZELO happenings, plan to drop by during my open office hours on Monday, March 21 between 10:00 and 12:00.

Click here on Monday, March 21 between 10:00 and 12:00.


A North Carolina Quadriplegic Speaks up about MAID
The Right-to-Die movement "is not coming after us – it’s expanding our rights"

The fight for Medical Aid in Dying (MAID) is stridently opposed by some ‘disability rights’ groups who claim that legalized aid in dying devalues the lives of people with disabilities, who will be looked down upon and discriminated against because society will be encouraging ‘a way out’ for those who are ill or aging, in a wheelchair, on oxygen, paralyzed, or somehow debilitated by a compromised body.

Rachelle Chapman disagrees. She was angry to learn what Not Dead Yet and others claim (without evidence) about MAID – and a dreaded ‘slippery slope’ that has never occurred in some 60 total years of legal US aid-in-dying. Rachelle speaks for herself. Hear what she has to say…
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