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Death with Dignity Bill 2016
Following consultations with Parliamentary colleagues and the community over the last eight months, Dr Duncan McFetridge, Liberal Member for Morphett, and Hon Steph Key, Labor Member for Ashford, prepared a new Bill, the Death with Dignity Bill 2016. The Death with Dignity Bill 2016 was introduced and tabled by Dr Duncan McFetridge, MP, on October 20, 2016, and seconded by Hon Steph Key, MP.
The Death with Dignity Bill 2016 states that the only person who will be able to request voluntary euthanasia will be someone who
1. Is an adult who is mentally competent to make the request
2. Is diagnosed with a terminal medical condition
3. Their death is inevitable due to the terminal medical condition
4. The suffering of the person has become intolerable to them and there is no reasonably available medical treatment or palliative care option that could relieve their suffering
5. The person has lived in South Australia for at least 12 months.
A terminal medical condition is defined as a condition which is incurable. The person will have reached a stage where their suffering is untreatable. The request must be made by the person and must be voluntary – confirmed by two independent doctors and two independent witnesses.
The Death with Dignity Bill 2016 specifically excludes anyone making a request for voluntary euthanasia on the grounds of their disability, their age, or their mental health condition.
Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2016
Debate on the Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2016 continued on October 20 with seven speakers and was adjourned to December 1.
Andrew Denton and GoGentleAustralia
Television producer, presenter, writer and comedian Andrew Denton has launched a campaign in support of legal assisted dying in Australia. Andrew’s profile, presence and skills are a welcome addition to the national campaign. His speeches, panel performances and arguments in support of voluntary euthanasia have provided a major stimulus to media interest in the debate and invigorated the campaign. Andrew and his team have created a website in support of the campaign, Go Gentle Australia, which provides facts, evidence, interviews, testimonials and inspiring resources in a dynamic and user friendly format.
The http://www.gogentleaustralia.org.au/ website is a major resource for the campaign and will provide continually up dated information for use by all participants in the debate.
For example, listen to Kylie Monaghan’s story and send your personalised copy of the Voluntary Euthanasia Bill to all 69 South Australian Members of Parliament, using BeTheBill. Listen also to nurse Anne Maxwell’s compelling story.
The recent launch of The Damage Done, an ebook documenting 150 stories from people who have suffered at the end of life, their families, doctors, nurses, carers and friends, provides an unarguable insight into why assisted dying legislation is needed in Australia.
The Damage Done was launched at the National Press Club on August 10. Andrew’s inspiring address is available here.
In 2015 Andrew and his team produced a series of 17 podcasts for The Wheeler Centre, titled Better Off Dead, which highlight the arguments for and against voluntary euthanasia. The series was the culmination of interviews in Australia, Belgium, the Netherlands and Oregon in 2015.
Professionals and other citizens support for Voluntary Euthanasia
Nurses, Doctors, Christians, Young People, People with Disabilities and Lawyers, people from a broad cross section of the community have established organisations and networks in support of the legal right to voluntary euthanasia.
People with Disabilities: https://www.facebook.com/MY-BODY-MY-Choice-VE-350165335178263/
Young People: https://www.facebook.com/groups/261738790597072
SAVES was established in 1983 to campaign for legal voluntary euthanasia and is staffed entirely by volunteers.
A majority of Australians have consistently supported voluntary euthanasia. In a 2012 NewsPoll, 82.5% of Australians supported the choice of voluntary euthanasia for a person with unrelievable suffering.
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Voluntary Euthanasia Bill
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