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Hemlock Society Founder Speaks at USF on Right-to-Die Issues

Hemlock Society of Florida, Inc.

Faye Girsh, president of the World Federation of Right-to-Die Societies, called it an epidemic: keeping people alive who would rather be dead. And she did not just mean the terminally ill.

Girsh spoke at the University of South Florida's College of Public Health Monday on dying in the age of choice. She said people with chronic diseases, such as cancer for instance, should have the choice to stop living, regardless of whether they are young or old. The same applies to older people who are not sick but feel that their life is complete and are ready to move on.

She also made a point out of calling it physician-assisted death and not physician-assisted suicide. She called suicide an impulsive and lonely act that usually results in a violent death.

"We do not think that people should die alone. We do not think people should die a violent death. We do not think people should die impulsively," Girsh said. "And we think people should be able to die a certain peaceful death surrounded by their loved ones."

Girsh was invited to speak on campus by the College of Public Health and will be making appearances in Orlando and Sarasota the rest of the week.

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