§ Lord Peston
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they will take forward the Law Commission's Report on Mental Incapacity.
§ The Lord Chancellor (Lord Irvine of Lairg)
The Law Commission's Report on Mental Incapacity is a thorough and detailed examination of the current law. It provides a coherent framework for reform. The Government recognise, however, that the report addresses sensitive issues on which strong personal views may be held.
The Government do not consider that it would be appropriate to legislate in this area without fresh public consultation. They therefore hope to issue a consultation paper by the end of the year seeking views on the full range of the Law Commission's recommendations.
The Law Commission's report does not make any recommendations concerning euthanasia. The Government are of the certain view, in line with the House of Lords Select Committee on Medical Ethics, that euthanasia cannot be sanctioned in any circumstances. The consultation paper will therefore not seek views on this subject.