Ulster Unionist Health Spokesperson, Jo-Anne Dobson MLA, has said she isn’t surprised that DUP and Sinn Fein MLAs joined together at the Health Committee to oppose her Organ Donation Private Members Bill.
The Upper Bann MLA said:
“Naturally I am bitterly disappointed, not for me, but for the many patients, their families and the campaigners because we won't see the rise in organs that could have resulted from changing our laws to an opt-out system.
“Despite the continued public support for change I’m disappointed that the two parties worked and voted together to oppose it. They must now explain their actions to the patients and their families waiting on a life-saving heart, lung, kidney or liver.
“Seventeen local people died last year waiting on a transplant. That’s why the status quo is simply not good enough and despite the efforts of our fantastic clinicians, patients continue to needlessly die. I remain firm in my belief that changing our laws will improve life chances and that this is a massive missed opportunity to deliver that chance for everyone in Northern Ireland.
“I would however like to thank the SDLP and Alliance representatives on the Health Committee for joining with Michael McGimpsey and I to attempt to support and amend the Bill, efforts which were sadly ultimately voted down by DUP/Sinn Fein.”