The assisted dying clinic Deathlab has teamed up with Sound As A Pound, the high street budget supermarket to provide Euthanasia on a budget.
"One of the main objections to euthanasia in the past," said Deathlab chairperson, Sue Aside, "is the cost. Services like Deathlab have always been expensive. Mainly due to the legal costs incurred."
With Deathlab only having clinics in Switzerland, due to assisted suicide rules in many countries, this was another factor in the cost. Legal loopholes in the UK and France mean that non-assisted suicide is still legal. It is this loophole that Deathlab will be exploiting. Unassisted suicide is still illegal in Spain, punishable by death. This particular mechanism was considered by Deathlab as a cheaper alternative than assisted suicide, as the Spanish state would pay for it. Unfortunately, it takes fifteen years for the conviction to go through.
"In Sound as a Pound shops across the UK we will be opening the Deathlab Booths," said Aside. "It is up to the person who wishes to use the booth to work out how to work it, as any assistant who helps set up the machine would be an accessory before the fact. That's a hard role to advertise for."
The booths have a choice of suicide, from suffocation to electrocution. There are plenty of warning screens after the initial tests in Luton revealed people were confusing then for Photo-Me booths and accidentally dying while trying to get a passport photo. This is an easy mistake to make, as the booths also take one last photo of the operator. The important aspect of the booths is that they have to be controlled by the person inside. There can be no assistance.
"One of the trickier aspects was removal of the dead bodies," said Aside. "However, after staying in a caravan in Rhyl for a week, I hit upon the solution whilst using the chemical toilet. Instant cremation."
The booths take pound coins, but prospective suicides must bring their own, as giving change for a machine could land the Sound as a Pound staff in legal difficulties.