ITV Tonight: Assisted Suicide Poll

ComRes interviewed 2,049 British adults online between 27th and 29th June 2014. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all GB adults aged 18+. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

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Date Published
16 Jul 2014

Further Description

Seven out of ten Britons (70%) say that they would support allowing assisted suicide under the new rules being proposed in the House of Lords. One in ten (10%) say they would oppose them.

  • Three quarters of people aged 65 and over (74%) say that they would support allowing assisted suicide under the new rules.
  • Despite the widespread support for the measures, there are still a number of concerns which colours the public’s views:
  • Half of Britons (47%) agree that legalising assisted suicide would inevitably lead to some vulnerable people opting to end their lives because they would not wish to be a burden on their loved ones. Just one in four disagree (26%).
  • There is also the sense that the extension of end of life care needs to be improved, with two thirds of the public (65%) agreeing that end of life care needs to be given more prominence in UK health policy given life-prolonging medical advances.

Q: A new bill is due to be debated in the House of Lords which would enable mentally competent adults in the UK who are terminally ill, and who have declared a clear and settled intention to end their own life, to be provided with assistance to commit suicide by self-administering life-ending medication. Two doctors would need to countersign their declaration and be satisfied that the person has a condition which cannot be reversed by treatment and is reasonably expected to die within 6 months.  Do you agree or disagree with these statements about this proposal?

 

Statement

Agree

Disagree

Don’t know

I would support allowing assisted suicide under these rules

70%

12%

18%

I would oppose allowing assisted suicide under these rules

10%

73%

18%

Base: All GB adults (n=2,049)

 

Statement

Agree

Disagree

Don’t know

Given life-prolonging medical advances, it is important that end of life care be given much more prominence in UK health policy

65%

9%

26%

Legalising assisted suicide would inevitably lead to some vulnerable people opting to end their lives because they would not wish to be a burden on their loved ones

47%

26%

28%

The risks involved in legalising assisted suicide are outweighed by the benefits

42%

29%

29%

The extent to which the requirement for two doctors to sign abortion forms has been ignored shows that this provision risks being an ineffective safeguard

30%

26%

45%

Legalising assisted suicide would inevitably lead to a further extension of the law to include people who are depressed or disabled

26%

46%

28%

Base: All GB adults (n=2,049)

METHODOLOGY NOTE

 

ComRes interviewed 2,049 British adults online between 27th and 29th June 2014. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all GB adults aged 18+. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

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