Euthanasia

Euthanasia involves the deliberate taking of a person’s life and assisted suicide makes a person complicit in the deliberate death of another. Any legalisation of Euthanasia fundamentally changes the relationship between a patient and their doctor. The trust between a patient and a doctor is eroded when doctors assume the conflicting roles of both healers and arrangers of death. There have been recent calls for the legalisation of Euthanasia and assisted suicide in Western Australia.

What is your party’s position on the legalisation of Euthanasia and assisted suicide? 

Does your party plan to introduce any Euthanasia legislation in the next term of Parliament? 

Answer

Party

Answer

Australian Christians 

Against any bill that seeks to take a life. No intention to introduce legislation.  

Labor

WA Labor allows Members to exercise a conscience vote on voluntary euthanasia and so we will not be asking Members to vote any one particular way on this issue. 

Any debate in Parliament on voluntary euthanasia for terminally ill people should be part of a wider community debate. If the issue comes before Parliament and Members have not already formed a position, they will seek views from all sections of the electorate and carefully consider those views before deciding on their voting position. Any Bill that came forward would be a Private Members Bill and not sponsored by WA Labor.

 

Liberal Party

Euthanasia is a personal matter and when raised in the Parliament has been a matter for individual members to consider.

Most recently, the Legislative Council of the WA Parliament debated this matter in 2010, when a Private Members Bill was sponsored by Hon Robin Chapple MLC.  The Bill was voted down 24 to 11 after extensive debate, with a range of concerns being expressed by those opposing it, including:

  • that euthanasia for pain and suffering is unnecessary given rapid advances in palliative care and pain control;
  • that appropriate care decisions are best left to the clinical judgment of medical practitioners;
  • that access to euthanasia might diminish research into palliative care and pain control; and
  • doubts about the inability of legislation to limit the creep of euthanasia to other classes of non-suffering, non-dying persons.

In the previous 15 years three other attempts had been made to introduce euthanasia laws in this State, and all failed for similar reasons.