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Montpelier hearings scheduled with 'death bill' expert witnesses to testify

— The Vermont Senate Health and Welfare committee has scheduled a full week of testimony on the Death with Dignity bill. The term "death with dignity" is also referred to as "assisted suicide". Such action would give terminally ill patients the option to request prescription medication to control the timing and manner of their own death.

Hearings will begin on Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. with an overview of the bill given by legislative counsel and will continue throughout the week each morning. The full schedule can be found here: http://www.leg.state.vt.us/schedule/frame.cfm?CommitteeMeetingID=11613. Witnesses will include former Vermont Gov. Madeline Kunin (D) and current Attorney Gen. Bill Sorrell (D), as well as Vermont Commissioner of Health Harry Chen (D). Several expert witnesses from Oregon are also scheduled to testify.

On Tuesday, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., the committee will host a public hearing, where anyone can testify on the bill. Information about the public hearing is available here: http://www.leg.state.vt.us/misc/pressreleases/Jan22SJudiciarySHealthWelfarePressRelease.pdf. Hundreds of Vermonters are expected to attend the public hearing.

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