The Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill officially passed into law in NSW last Thursday, 19 May 2022. The final vote for the third reading of the bill was made in the Upper House.
There were genuine efforts by Upper House members to put in place amendments that would protect citizens of NSW.
Some of these notable amendments were:
- Offering free palliative care to patients who apply for Voluntary Assisted Dying in areas of NSW where palliative care is non existent. Votes: 16 Ayes vs 20 Noes
- Patients accessing VAD to be referred to a psychiatrist or a psychologist. Amendment was raised to protect elder abuse, coercion or bullying. Votes: 14 Ayes vs 23 Noes
- Cooling off period – the amendment would have provided at least 48 hours after the patient has been approved for VAD. This was designed as a time of reflection or consideration. Votes: 12 Ayes vs 23 Noes
- For conscientious objection for faith-based residential facilities or healthcare establishments to elect not to provide assisted suicide services. Votes 13 Ayes vs 23 Noes
The debate lasted for over eight hours and all reasonable amendments were voted down, so the bill passed largely unamended.
The champion efforts of the Hon. Greg Donnelly and the. Hon Damien Tudehope should be commended. They were unrelenting in their push back against this bill.
We want to extend our heartfelt thanks for the commitment you displayed to oppose this bill. You raised your voice through ePetitions, phone canvassing, email campaigns, attending rallies and praying. Together, we defended life to the members of the NSW Parliament.
The fight for life is not over. Together, we will continue to declare that life is sacred, and as God’s people, we will continue to defend it!