09 May NDY Staff Raise Disability and Minority Community Issues in Boston Training
On Saturday, May 6th, NDY’s John Kelly and Anita Cameron were part of a very informative and successful training on the dangers of assisted suicide legislation held in Boston by the Patients Rights Action Fund (PRAF). PRAF is an important partner in coalitions that oppose legalization of assisted suicide, and has offered similar trainings in many states across the country.
In addition to numerous topics effectively covered by PRAF leadership, John Kelly, NDY’s New England Regional Director, talked about “The Messenger.”
Everyone can be an effective advocate against assisted suicide. If you don’t have your own story, you can use stories about other people. You can talk to people you know, you can talk with legislators, you can write letters and op-eds and use social media.
For spokespeople for a campaign, there are many good candidates, including disabled people, medical professionals, people of color, and people with powerful personal stories, like being misdiagnosed as terminal or having been suicidal. For example, because my disability is obvious, and many people think that they would rather be dead than like me, I can speak honestly against the mindset of “better dead than disabled.” I can try to humanize my position and nudge people out of their prejudices.
It’s important to talk about social justice, protecting innocent people, and looking at the significance of enacting assisted suicide as a state supported program.