A majority of Irish people believe that assisted suicide should be legalised in Ireland. The latest Am’rach/Claire Byrne Live poll for TheJournal.ie found that 55% of people think that assisted suicide should be legal in Ireland. The poll found that 22% opposed the legalisation of assisted suicide, while 23% said they didn’t know.
Men were slightly more likely to support legalisation than women, with 58% supporting it compared to 53% of women. Young people were among the least likely to support legalisation. The poll found that 48% of 18 to 24-year-olds supported legalisation of assisted suicide, compared to 60% support among 25 to 34-year-olds and 67% among 35 to 44-year-olds. Among people aged over 55, support dropped to 49%.
People in Dublin overwhelmingly backed legalisation, with 58% in support. However, support was also high in the rest of Leinster (54%), as well Munster (53%) and Connaught and Ulster (57%). There was no significant difference based on social background. Those from well-off backgrounds largely backed legalisation, with support at 57%. People from lower-income backgrounds also supported changes to the law – 54% backed legalisation.
While other countries, such as the Netherlands and Switzerland, have reformed their laws to allow for euthanasia in some cases, proposed changes to the law in Ireland has faced significant opposition.
Earlier this month, a former teacher from Scotland who campaigned for the legalisation of euthanasia died at a Swiss clinic. In 2013, Marie Fleming lost her Supreme Court bid to establish a constitutional right to die. She wanted to ensure that her partner, Tom Curran, would not be prosecuted if he helped her to end her life.
The Claire Byrne Live / Amar’ch Research Panel consists of over 1,000 Irish adults, all aged 18+.