Following last week´s inadmissibility decision of the European Court of Human Rights in the case of Gard and Others v. the UK, Members of the European Parliament keep on joining the initiative to express their full support to Charlie Gard, Chris Gard and Connie Yates. “We deem ourselves obliged to voice our deepest concerns about the outrageous outcome of Charlie’s case, which infringes Europe’s most fundamental values, particularly the right to life, the right to human dignity and personal integrity”, said Miroslav Mikolášik MEP (EPP/SK), Chairman of the EPP Working Group on Bioethics and Human Dignity in the European Parliament who launched this initiative.
Charlie Gard is a 10-month-old boy suffering from a rare, life-threatening medical condition who is currently dependent on life support in one of London’s hospitals. His doctors concluded that he is no longer entitled to be in this world and sought approval from courts to discontinue his life-supporting treatment, including nutrition and hydration. Unfortunately, both the domestic courts as well as the ECtHR identified with the reasoning of the medical practitioners and ruled in favour of ending Charlie’s life in absolute contradiction to his parents’ will. The ECtHR was the last legal recourse for Chris Gard and Connie Yates in their fight for their baby’s right to life. Love for children often leads parents to go beyond what is normally possible when it comes to their child’s well-being; just as in the case of Chris Gard and Connie Yates who managed to raise £1.4 million to finance in our understanding ethically viable innovative medical procedures that could bring them and others hope. They have successfully found an experimental treatment in the United States. Paradoxically, they are still facing the resentment of their home country and their immense long-term effort seems to have fallen in vain.
“The State, all its bodies and public authorities, are here for its citizens to help and protect them. This is the fundamental principle underlying modern democratic systems. How is it then possible that even today, in the 21st century, in times when we ourselves designate our era as one which respects fundamental values of life and human dignity, that the United Kingdom does not act in the best interest of its citizens? Is this truly the way we want to go?”, state jointly so-far 37 undersigned MEPs who answer with a clear “NO” and strongly condemn the shameful conduct that undermines these values of our civilised society.