When Colorado voters mark their November ballots, one choice they’ll make is whether to approve the End of Life Options Act, statewide Proposition 106. The proposed law follows the model forged in Oregon, where for twenty years it has been legal for doctors to help the terminally ill take their own lives — by prescribing lethal amounts of drugs the patient administers herself.
The ballot issue is especially personal to those who knew Sheryl Randall of Evergreen, 67, who committed suicide by hanging herself after a long, debilitating illness.
“It would have been so much easier to know she could just take something and it would have been over,” says one friend, who spoke with Susan Greene of The Colorado Independent.
The Gallup organization, which has polled Americans on the topic consistently since 1997, reports support for legal assisted suicide rose to 68 percent by last year. But it is currently allowed in some form in just five states. Supporters of the Colorado initiative turned in 160,000 signatures to get the measure on the ballot. They face opposition from a coalition organized by the Colorado Catholic Conference.