Euthanasia Bill defeated by one vote in NSW Upper House

“After a marathon debate that ran all of Thursday and ended at nearly midnight, the bill to legalise voluntary assisted dying has failed to pass the New South Wales’ Upper House by a single vote.

With 19 voting in support but 20 against, the result came down to the wire. …

– Report from ABC News. (Image: St. Helen’s Bishopsgate.)

Before we allow Euthanasia, look who the Dutch have killed

“Have Victoria’s politicians, half way to legalising euthanasia, looked at what’s happened in Holland?

Here are some very troubling cases – plus interviews with the brother of an alcoholic who had himself killed, and  a woman with tinnitus who also had herself killed just three weeks later. …”

– Last night’s Bolt Report on Sky News Australia looked at the disturbing Dutch experience of ‘euthanasia’. via The Herald Sun.

Euthanasia: Bill passes Victoria’s Lower House after 24-hour debate

“Victoria’s controversial voluntary euthanasia legislation has been passed in the Lower House of Parliament after a marathon debate that lasted more than 24 hours. …

The bill will now go to the 40-member Upper House, where the numbers are also tight, for debate in a fortnight.

If it gets through the Upper House, terminally ill people over the age of 18, in severe pain and with only a year to live will be able to access lethal drugs.”

– Story from ABC News.

Please reject euthanasia: Church to Victorian Parliament

Here’s a media release from the Diocese of Melbourne:

October 20 2017

Please reject euthanasia: Church to Victorian Parliament

Melbourne Anglicans have pleaded with the Victorian Government not legalise medically assisted suicide and voluntary euthanasia.

The church’s synod discussed the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill last night at their annual synod at St Paul’s Cathedral as a few blocks away Victorian MPs debated the bill in State Parliament.

Medical ethicist Denise Cooper-Clarke told the synod the bill’s proposed safeguards were inadequate, that it was inherently discriminatory, and that improved palliative care was a much safer and more compassionate way to address “bad deaths”.

She said the bill would fundamentally change attitudes to suicide at a time when the Government was trying to reduce youth suicide

Social Responsibilities Commission chairman Gordon Preece noted that media coverage advocating euthanasia was usually accompanied by links to BeyondBlue and Lifeline – an odd contradiction.

The synod voted to urge the Government to better resource palliative care, especially in regional and remote communities, Aboriginal communities and nursing homes, and to provide more palliative care training for health professionals. It resolved to oppose introducing a legal framework for “assisted dying”.

Dr Cooper-Clarke said the legislation would not cover only the small number of extreme cases but a much broader range of circumstances, where the suffering of the patients may not involve severe pain or physical symptoms at all. Overseas studies had shown pain was not the primary reason for requests for assisted dying but psychological factors: depression, hopelessness, being tired of life, loss of control and loss of dignity

“Elderly, frail and sick patients are especially vulnerable to implied or explicit messages from relatives that they are a burden and that they would be ‘better off dead’. It is naïve to assume that people always have the best interests of their relatives at heart. Elder abuse is prevalent in our society,” she said.

“Many people support assisted dying because they believe it is a compassionate response to suffering. But how is it compassionate to agree with someone who is so distressed that they wish to end their life that yes, their life is not worth living, and yes they would be better off dead?”

Don’t do it: Paul Keating in 11th hour bid to stop euthanasia laws

“Paul Keating has made a dramatic last-minute bid to stop Victoria’s Parliament from approving voluntary euthanasia laws as state MPs prepare for their third late-night debate before a vote he characterised as ‘a threshold moment’ for the entire country.

The 73-year-old, who was Australia’s 24th prime minister and has virtually unrivalled status within the Labor Party, slammed the ‘bald utopianism’ underlying the case for change, which assumed rules would never be bent by doctors and families when it becomes more convenient for carers or financial beneficiaries to see a gravely ill person die sooner. …”

– Story from Mark Kenny in The Sydney Morning Herald.

See also: Paul Keating: Voluntary euthanasia is a threshold moment for Australia, and one we should not cross. – SMH.

“No matter what justifications are offered for the bill, it constitutes an unacceptable departure in our approach to human existence and the irrevocable sanctity that should govern our understanding of what it means to be human. …

Once this bill is passed the expectations of patients and families will change. The culture of dying, despite certain and intense resistance, will gradually permeate into our medical, health, social and institutional arrangements. It stands for everything a truly civil society should stand against.”

Duty to Die? — ‘Australian Presbyterian’ on Euthanasia

In the light of today’s news of a proposed “Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill” to come before NSW Parliament (ABC News story here), the current issue (Winter 2017) of Australian Presbyterian magazine is particularly timely as it addresses the issue of euthanasia.

Article 1: Opening Pandora’s Box. Why Christians must stand firm against euthanasia. An interview with Dr. Scott Rae.

Article 2: A bad move. By Moore College graduate Dr Neil Chambers.

(In addition, Marylynn Rouse from the John Newton Project reflects on John Newton’s experience of God’s amazing grace.)

The issue is available as a PDF file at this link.

Related posts on our website.

Hope, not Death: Euthanasia is no response to sexual abuse

Culture of death“Reforms to allow euthanasia in Tasmania, South Australia and Victoria are likely to be debated this year, and Senator Leyonhjelm and the Greens want to give the Territories the power to legalise euthanasia. While suicide itself has long been legal throughout Australia – attempted suicide attracts no penalty or consequence – they want medical killing legalised. …

It is no stretch to imagine that a young woman with PTSD, a survivor of sexual abuse, might qualify for euthanasia in Australia in the future especially in an environment of over-stretched and under-funded mental health systems.”

– Read why in the full, troubling, article by Melinda Tankard Reist at ABC Religion and Ethics. (h/t SydneyAnglicans.net)

Related posts on our website.

‘How euthanasia advocates will never stop at the terminally ill’

Tom Mortier“Tom Mortier never paid much attention to the discussion about voluntary death in his country.

‘I was like just about anyone else here in Belgium: I didn’t care at all,’ he said. ‘If people want to die, it’s probably their choice. It didn’t concern me.’

But in April, 2012, ten years after the law changed to allow euthanasia, Mortier, a university lecturer, received a message at work…”

Anglican Mainstream links to this article in The Telegraph. (Photo: HOPE.)

Tasmanian euthanasia bill defeated

Tasmania“The legislation would have allowed terminally ill Tasmanians to end their lives 10 days after making three requests to their doctor.”

– Report from the ABC.

Euthanasia bill to be debated in Tasmania on Tuesday

Bishop John HarrowerBishop of Tasmania, John Harrower, has been working hard to prevent the introduction of Euthanasia in Tasmania. See his blog.

Euthanasia: My letter to Tas MHAs 9 Oct 2013 –

“Last Wednesday I wrote the following letter to all 25 Members of the House of Assembly of the Tasmanian Parliament briefly stating my reasons for asking them to oppose the euthanasia legislation to be voted on this coming Tuesday.

Please pray that our politicians will oppose this deadly legislation.

Also:
Depression, disability & ‘safe’ euthanasia
.
A Response to Giddings & McKim’s euthanasia proposal.
Euthanasia: Pastoral Letter 3 Oct.13.

Related:
On the elimination of the suffering – Dr Megan Best.
Euthanasia lives again.

Bishop of Tasmania – Pastoral Letter on Euthanasia

Bishop John Harrower“Today I sent the following Pastoral Letter to all Anglican Parishes in Tasmania asking that the letter and attachments be made available to Parishioners.…

Pastoral Letter – Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2013

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

You will have learned recently that the Hon. Lara Giddings and the Hon. Nick McKim, Members for Franklin have recently introduced the “Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2013” to the Tasmanian parliament.

This Bill would allow those who meet certain eligibility criteria to be prescribed and receive a lethal injection. This Bill is a direct threat to the lives of Tasmanians, particularly the sick and elderly. This Bill embraces a philosophy of human value defined by convenience and personal capacity. It stands against the responsibility of societies and governments to implement compassionate, timely, and effective care for those who are unwell or disabled in some way. …”

– Read it all at Bishop Harrower’s blog.

Related: Belgian helped to die after three sex change operations (BBC News).

“A transsexual has been helped to die by doctors in Belgium, after a series of failed sex-change operations. Nathan Verhelst, born a girl, asked for help to end his life on grounds of psychological suffering. He died in a Brussels hospital on Monday. Two doctors concluded the 44-year-old did not have temporary depression. …

Belgium legalised euthanasia in 2002. There were 52 cases of euthanasia on psychological grounds last year. … There were 1,432 recorded cases of euthanasia in Belgium in 2012; a 25% increase on the previous year’s figure.”

Support palliative care not euthanasia — NSW Council of Churches

NSW Council of ChurchesMedia release from the NSW Council of Churches:

“8 May 2013. Support palliative care not euthanasia.

The NSW Council of Churches today called on all members of the NSW Legislative Council to vote against a private member’s bill that would legalise euthanasia and assisted suicide in NSW. Read more

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