Jersey passes historic assisted dying vote

The States Assembly in Jersey has just passed a historic milestone, voting in favour of giving islanders the right to choose help to die. My Death, My Decision, welcomes this progress.

Politicians in Jersey have decided by 32 votes to 14, to allow people who are terminally ill with six months or fewer left to live, assistance to die. This time limit is extended to twelve months for people with neurodegenerative conditions such as motor neurone disease.  This is broader than all past proposals in England and Wales, which have been limited to people with six months left to live, no matter the illness.

However, politicians voted against ‘Route 2’ by 19 votes to 27, which would have allowed people who are suffering unbearably from a condition that cannot be cured, but are not terminally ill, access to an assisted death. This means that people who have conditions such as multiple sclerosis or locked-in syndrome would be excluded from having a dignified death. The proposal for this route included additional protections and safeguards compared to ‘Route 1’ for people with terminal conditions.

Half of all assisted deaths of UK residents in Switzerland would likely fall under ‘Route 2’, and 3.5% of assisted deaths in Canada fall under their almost equivalent ‘Track 2’ system. The citizens’ jury carried out in Jersey in 2021 overwhelmingly (78%) called for there to be a compassionate option for people who were suffering unbearably but not terminally ill. 

The proposals, now passed, will be turned into legislation, before a final vote next year. If passed, there will be an 18-month period for doctors to be trained, guidance to be written and a support service to be set up. The first assisted death in Jersey could be in 2027.

Trevor Moore, Chair of My Death, My Decision, said:

“This is an encouraging step for Jersey in its progress to a compassionate assisted dying law. Politicians in the UK should take note. The proposals put forward are detailed, safe and compassionate. Finally, residents of Jersey will have the choice of a dignified end.

 It’s regrettable that politicians voted against ‘Route 2’, as that would have given people with conditions like multiple sclerosis a compassionate choice. It will be hard for health professionals to look at a person with multiple sclerosis and tell them they don’t even have a choice and must suffer, while someone with terminal cancer will have the option of an assisted death on their terms. Nevertheless, Jersey is moving in the right direction while England and Wales have stood still.”


Members of the MDMD team, as well as individuals affected by the current law on assisted dying, are available for interview upon request

For further comment or information, media should contact Nathan Stilwell at or phone 07456200033.

Media can use the following press images and videos, as long as they are attributed to “My Death, My Decision”.

My Death, My Decision is a grassroots campaign group that wants the law in England and Wales to allow mentally competent adults who are terminally ill or intolerably suffering from an incurable condition the option of a legal, safe, and compassionate assisted death. With the support of over 3,000 members and supporters, we advocate for an evidence-based law that would balance individual choice alongside robust safeguards and finally give the people of England and Wales choice at the end of their lives.