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Compassion & Choices New York Unveils 3rd Ad of 2021

Monona Yin to NY Legislature: “Stop Needless Suffering. Pass the Medical Aid in Dying Act.”

Compassion & Choices today unveiled a new 30-second ad featuring Brooklyn resident Monona Yin and her late mother, Fay Hoh Yin. This ad – the third of the 2021 legislative session – calls on the Legislature to stop needless suffering and pass the Medical Aid in Dying Act (A.4321-a/S.6471).

Medical aid in dying allows a terminally ill, mentally capable adult with six months or less to live to request a prescription from their doctor they can take when their suffering becomes too great to bear and die peacefully. Last month, New Mexico became the 10th state (along with Washington, D.C.) to authorize medical aid in dying.

The new ad opens with Monona Yin watching video of Fay Hoh Yin. Text on screen: “In Loving Memory of Fay Hoh Yin 1932-2020”

Fay says: “You only come to that point where you want to die, is when life becomes unbearable.”

Over video and stills of Monona and Fay both together and separately:

Monona says, “My mom had incurable lymphoma. All she wanted was peace at the end of her life.”

Monona, talking to the camera: “She feared that she would die in terrible pain.”

Monona, looking: “This fear robbed us of time together.”

Monona, talking to the camera: “I’m continuing her fight in her memory.

Over pictures of Fay, and Fay and Monona:

Monona says, “So no mother lives with fear until her last day. Stop Needless Suffering. Pass the Medical Aid in Dying Act.”

On Sunday, Monona wrote about spending her first Mother’s Day in 58 years motherless. Her heartwarming column about Fay, “A Mother’s Day Gift of Mercy,” can be found here.

Monona concludes her column: “Here is one form of suffering that we can end right now — together. If New York passes this law, people like my mother can have the peace they crave without hurting anyone else. To me, that would be a tremendous act of compassion, kindness and love toward the people who are already walking the last mile of life.”

Last month, Compassion & Choices debuted an ad featuring Rochester resident Scott Barraco, recalling how his late girlfriend, Cathy Quinn, died in prolonged agony from tongue cancer. Cathy wanted to die peacefully with a prescription for aid-in-dying medication. But Cathy, like Fay Hoh Yin, also lived in New York State, where medical aid in dying is not authorized. That ad can be seen here.  As Barraco says, “Albany lawmakers had the power to give Cathy peace at the end of life. Why wouldn’t they do it?”

Earlier this session, Compassion & Choices ran a TV commercial featuring two New Yorkers, Dr. Jeff Gardere and Jennifer Milich, a terminally ill Buffalo resident, urging the Legislature to pass the Medical Aid in Dying Act. That ad can be seen here.

Jennifer Milich is also featured in a powerful video conversation with Assemblymember Karines Reyes (D-Bronx), who also is a registered nurse.

Compassion & Choices Senior New York Campaign Director Corinne Carey said, “Every day, too many New Yorkers are suffering while lawmakers refuse to act. Every year, more and more families come to us , having lost a loved one after a horrible death experience to ask why lawmakers won’t act. Nobody has the power to save terminally ill New Yorkers from inevitable death. But lawmakers have the power to provide peace of mind to countless New Yorkers and their loved ones by authorizing the compassionate end-of-life care option of medical aid in dying, which is now available to more than one in five Americans, including our neighbors in New Jersey and Vermont.

“Medical aid in dying may not be the right end-of-life decision for everyone. Authorizing it will change nothing for those who would never seek it, but it changes everything for those who need it. I urge the Legislature to pass the Medical Aid in Dying Act in 2021. Do it for Fay Hoh Yin. Do it for Cathy Quinn. And do it for Jennifer Milich, who needs it now,” Carey said.

New York’s Medical Aid in Dying Act is supported by the New York State Academy of Family Physicians, League of Women Voters of New York State, New York Civil Liberties Union, New York State Public Health Association, StateWide Senior Action Council, Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Harlem United, Latino Commission on AIDS, Planned Parenthood Empire State Acts, NOW-NY, and Latinos for Healthcare Equity, and the WESPAC Foundation, among many others.