ABC News 25 May 2017
Family First Comment: Another knock-back. In the words of the Premier…
“I am concerned about the nature of assisted dying being available to those with a non-terminal illness and those of a young age. I remain concerned at the risk of those vulnerable. Protection for these people cannot be guaranteed by this legislation. It is easy in theory but a lot less so in practice.”
For the third time in 10 years, Tasmania’s Lower House has voted down voluntary euthanasia legislation that would have allowed people to end their own lives in certain medical circumstances.
MPs were allowed a conscience vote on the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill, with eight voting for, and 16 voting against the bill.
It had been co-sponsored by Labor MP Lara Giddings and Greens leader Cassy O’Connor.
Cassy O’Connor said the bill had been designed around compassion and keeping the status quo was “cruel.”
She lauded Franklin Liberal Nic Street for being “the first Tasmanian Liberal MP ever to vote in support of assisted dying legislation.”
She was disappointed that despite polling consistently indicating 80-85 per cent public support, Tasmanian MPs voted against the reform.
Ms O’Connor vowed to bring the bill back.
“Because every day we delay on this issue, we abandon people who are in the most terrible situation and suffering,” she said.
Ms Giddings told ABC Radio Hobart no-one from the Government contacted her with their concerns.
“They also had the bill since November of last year, none of them picked up the phone to say ‘hey Lara we’ve got a concern with this element of it, can we go to a committee on it rather than debate it straight away?’
“None of them said it in November last year.”
Not the end of the discussion: Premier
Premier Will Hodgman said he remained concerned about the vulnerable and suggested it was not the end of the debate.
“It is a very confronting and challenging issue. I have no fear in saying that I am personally very confronted by it and heavily conflicted,” he said.
“I am concerned about the nature of assisted dying being available to those with a non-terminal illness and those of a young age. I remain concerned at the risk of those vulnerable.
“Protection for these people cannot be guaranteed by this legislation. It is easy in theory but a lot less so in practice.”
He pledged to continue to part of community debate.
READ MORE: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-24/tasmania-votes-down-euthanasia-bill/8555882