Voluntary euthanasia laws provide certainty for terminally-ill people

20th Oct 2017

Voluntary euthanasia laws passed today by the lower house of the Victorian parliament will ensure much needed legal oversight and certainty for people in need, the Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) said today.

If the legislation is passed by the Victorian upper house, Victoria will become the first state in Australia to offer an assisted-dying regime.

ALA Victoria President Tom Ballantyne said the right-to-die legislation would provide relief and compassion for Victorians in need, their families, and the medical professionals who help them manage their final days.

“The Australian Lawyers Alliance supports this voluntary euthanasia legislation and the dignity it allows terminally-ill Victorians,” Mr Ballantyne said.

“Terminally-ill Victorians deserve the right to decide when to end their suffering. Importantly, the voluntary euthanasia laws which were passed today also provide legal regulation and oversight to a practice that is already occurring.”

“The law as it currently stands puts some medical professionals in an invidious situation, where they can be faced with a conflict between acting in their clients’ best interest and complying with the law."

“These laws provide certainty for terminally ill people and their families, as well as the medical professionals who are assisting them,” Mr Ballantyne said.

“We urge the upper house to pass this legislation.”

Tags: Human rights