By Diane Coleman: For Entire Post, Go Here…
On October 8, 2020, Not Dead Yet, National ADAPT, ADAPT of Texas and the Autistic Self Advocacy Network joined in a friend-of-the-court (“amicus”) brief filed by Texas healthcare and civil rights attorney Michelle Hayes to support Tinslee Lewis and her mother’s case to maintain life support. The “strange bedfellows” amici groups include disability rights, religious and pro-life organizations.
Tinslee Lewis is a 20-month-old girl on life support at Cook Children’s Medical Center (“Cook”) in Fort Worth, Texas. Due to a heart defect, she is on a ventilator. Tinslee has been reported to be conscious and interactive when she is not under sedation. NDY wrote about Tinslee’s case, including video from a local television interview with her mother, here. Since 2019, Cook hospital has worked to withdraw Tinslee’s life support.
The lower court in the case issued a temporary injunction against Cook requiring life support to continue pending the results of a trial on the facts and relevant legal issues. The Court of Appeals for the Second District of Texas held the Texas futility law unconstitutional. Now Cook has petitioned the Supreme Court of Texas for review, seeking to overturn the Court of Appeals ruling and the injunction without a trial on the merits.
The opening argument in the Amicus Brief raises disability discrimination issues: