...and why discretion is needed over bus lane fines.
THERE must be enormous sympathy for Paul Lamb, who has lost what could be his last legal attempt for the right to be given help to end his life.
Left in constant pain as a result of a road accident, the Leeds dad-of-two wants a change in the law that would grant him, and others in similar positions, the right to die.
Though naturally disappointed, Paul, from Bramley, says he’s pleased his fight has ensured debate over this issue continues. He is now hoping that Lord Falconer’s Assisted Dying Bill, which goes before the House of Lords next month, is successful.
But there is still, understandably, a great deal of reluctance to introduce such legislation.
Given that this will affect often very vulnerable people, there must be concern that it could prove open to abuse – the fear of Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, a former Paralympian and now a leading disability rights campaigner.
While the right to die debate will go on, the legal battle fought by Mr Lamb at least draws attention to the plight of those forced to endure medical conditions that result in a poor quality of life and highlights the need for a renewed focus on palliative care.
It cannot be right, for instance, that the nation’s hospices are forced to rely so heavily on the benevolence of donors to continue their invaluable work.
Discretion needed over bus lane fines
NO one can deny that there is a need to get traffic in Leeds moving more quickly.
At the same time, planners want to encourage more people to use public transport – hence the growing number of dedicated bus lanes.
Of course, these lanes won’t speed things up if cars use them as well, which is why it’s necessary to enforce the rules by fining motorists who stray into them.
However, if drivers aren’t going to feel they are being treated as cash cows, two things need to happen.
First, the bus lanes must be clearly signed. And secondly, discretion must be shown if it’s a first offence or a driver has made way for an emergency vehicle.