Roeschke Law discusses the impact of legally-assisted suicide on the disabled.

The Impact of Legally-Assisted Suicide on the Disabled

Q: How would legally-assisted suicide impact the disabled?

Arizona disability benefits attorneys help a wide range of suffering people and their families access available government benefits. 

The two federal government disability benefits programs are Social Security Disability Insurance (“SSDI”) and Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”). While the former requires a certain work history and work credits prior to becoming disabled in order to qualify for benefits, the latter requires no work history but mandates the applicant not exceed its severely restricted income and assets threshold.

Qualifying for disability benefits requires meeting the “disability” definition of suffering from a physical or mental impairment that prevents engaging in substantial gainful activities, which has lasted, or is expected to last, for 12 months or more or result in death. The government even has an extensive list of impairments that would qualify for benefits, but the list is not all-inclusive. 

We all know society is not always kind to the disabled. We’ve seen headlines where people with so-called “invisible” disabilities are confronted by angry strangers when using handicapped parking. In addition to ignorant and hateful backlash questioning the legitimacy of people’s disabilities, there is often stereotyping of this disabled as lazy and not wanting to work, and more. 

While these above situations are upsetting, the disabled are also targets of a more dangerous threat – the euthanasia movement. Legally-assisted suicide is a threat to those with disabilities. Opponents fear that any guidelines imposed in such legislation as safeguards would still fall short in protecting against abuse as it applies to people with disabilities. Those against permitting people with terminal illnesses to access lethal prescription medication fear that “society is coming to accept the noxious idea that life with disabilities is not worth living”.

What makes the disabled vulnerable to legalized euthanasia?

Depression, financial and emotional pressures, misdiagnosis of terminal diseases, and insurance companies offering to subsidize lethal drugs while denying costly life-sustaining medical treatment are some reasons assisted suicide laws can be dangerous when applied to the disabled. 

If you need assistance applying for Social Security disability benefits or appealing the denial of benefits, the Disability Attorneys of Arizona at Roeschke Law can help you. Contact us today for a free consultation

From our offices in Tempe, Tucson, and Phoenix, we help disabled individuals and their families throughout Arizona access the disability benefits to which they’re entitled. It’s all we do.