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Victorian Upper House Shows the Way on Assisted Dying

Victorian Upper House Shows the Way on Assisted Dying

"The State of Victoria is showing the way on Assisted Dying legislation," says ACT Leader David Seymour. "On Friday the State's Upper House voted 22-18 in favour of the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2017, a critical step in legalising Assisted Dying in the State."

"The bill is similar to New Zealand's End of Life Choice Bill, which allows people with a prognosis of less than six months or an grievous and irremediable condition in an advanced state of decline to seek Assisted Dying. I expect our parliament will vote on the End of Life Choice bill within the next six months."

The Victorian vote was hotly contested with former Prime Ministers Tony Abbot and Paul Keating both calling the bill 'Unacceptable' and urging the State's Upper House to block it after the Lower House passed by a comfortable 47-37. The law would allow those with a terminal illness and a prognosis of death within 12 months to seek Assisted Dying.

"It is absurd that suicide, informal euthanasia without consent by doctors, refusal of medical treatment, and stavation by refusing food and water all cause death and are all perfectly legal with no safegurds in New Zealand, but a properly safeguarded choice about how and when to go it denied those who suffer most in our country.

"New Zealand's MPs will come under similar pressure however they should take comfort from the Victorian result where members of both houses have gone with overwhelming public opinion in favour of legalisation. I note all but one of New Zealand's living Prime Ministers are in favour of legalised Assisted Dying and have voted for previous bills in 1995 and 2003.

"Victoria will be follwing Canada, California, and Colorado who have all legalsied Assisted Dying in the past two years, it is time that New Zealand regained its tradition of liberal and compassionate reform."


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