Despite extensive lobbying by celebrities, advocacy by the disabled, who have the most to lose through euthanasia, has won the day in South Australia.
Australian Christian Lobby Acting South Australian Director Dan Flynn said the failure of the Voluntary Euthanasia Bill to garner sufficient support in the Parliament and in the medical community have resulted in its failure to be bought to a vote tomorrow.
“The briefings to members of parliament yesterday by disability advocates have proved decisive in undercutting parliamentary support," Mr Flynn said.
“We are grateful for the hard work done by various community groups and individuals, including the advocacy of many ACL supporters, expressing their clear objections to any form of euthanasia.”
The Australian Medical Association, the peak body representing doctors, yesterday condemned the bill. In a letter to members of parliament, it said the bill was full of flaws which were not addressed by rushed amendments.
“It was disappointing to see those sponsoring the bill doing whatever it took to get the legislation passed, rather than listening to the most vulnerable and looking at what is in the best interest of South Australians,” Mr Flynn said
“As a just and compassionate society we can find better ways to deal with the suffering which do not draw us into providing state-sanctioned killing.
“If you follow the logic of euthanasia proponents, it is easy to see how safeguards are removed, if not immediately, then certainly in the future.
“Research shows that there is no such thing as ‘safe’ euthanasia legislation and as a community we need to send a clear signal to those requiring assistance that they are not better off dead but are valued human beings.
“This development will be welcome news to those suffering from disabilities, depression and the vulnerable, who are looking for support to carry them through difficult times.
“The Australian Christian Lobby thanks parliamentarians for taking a strong stand for the vulnerable by rejecting this euthanasia bill.”