Remembering Baroness Greengross

24 June, 2022

Humanists UK is saddened to hear of the death of Baroness Sally Greengross OBE, member of the All-Party Parliamentary Humanist Group (APPHG) and crossbench peer.

Baroness Greengross was elected as an independent member of the House of Lords in 2002 and co-chaired several All-Party Parliamentary Groups focussed primarily on older life care.

As a committed humanist she also championed the campaigns of Humanists UK. In March 2021 Sally signed a joint-letter from the APPHG calling on the Government to instigate a review into the UK’s laws on assisted dying. Later that year she spoke at the Second Reading of the Assisted Dying Bill supporting plans to allow doctors to help terminally ill patients end their lives. She said previously on the issue of assisted dying:

‘I do not want it on my conscience that I have denied somebody who has become physically incapacitated and cannot endure their suffering any longer, but is unable to terminate their life without some help, the right that everyone else enjoys.’

Earlier this year, she was one of 53 MPs and Peers who signed a letter urging the Government to legally recognise humanist marriages in England and Wales.

Baroness Greengross was a former Director General of Age Concern England, joint Chair of the Age Concern Institute of Gerontology at King’s College London, and Secretary General of Eurolink Age. She was also the founder and patron of We are Hourglass, the national support group for victims of elder abuse.

In December 2006, it was announced that she would be a Commissioner for the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

She was awarded an OBE in the 1993 New Year Honours and raised to the peerage for Notting Hill in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in 2000.

Paying tribute, Chief Executive of Humanists UK, Andrew Copson said:

‘We’re deeply saddened to hear of the death of Sally. She was a great friend to Humanists UK and champion not only of our campaigns for humanist marriage and assisted dying, but also of bettering the lives of older people living in the UK. Our sincere condolences go out to Sally’s family at this difficult time.’

Notes:

For further comment or information, media should contact Humanists UK Director of Public Affairs and Policy Richy Thompson at press@humanists.uk or phone 020 7324 3072 or 07534 248 596.

Humanists UK is the national charity working on behalf of non-religious people. Powered by 100,000 members and supporters, we advance free thinking and promote humanism to create a tolerant society where rational thinking and kindness prevail. We provide ceremonies, pastoral care, education, and support services benefitting over a million people every year and our campaigns advance humanist thinking on ethical issues, human rights, and equal treatment for all.

The All-Party Parliamentary Humanist Group is a cross-party group of Members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords of all the main parties, including members from the Crossbenches in the Lords. The Group has grown rapidly, from its first beginnings in the 1960s and now has over 110. The Group is not part of Humanists UK, but Humanists UK provides the secretariat for the Group.