For release: 15 April 2015

The Greens’ latest attempt to introduce euthanasia failed in the Victorian Parliament this afternoon.

Upper House MP Colleen Hartland was forced to retreat from her motion to have the Victorian Law Reform Commission draft legislation after it became clear during parliamentary debate that a majority of Parliamentarians were unsupportive.

ACL Victorian director Dan Flynn welcomed today’s developments.

“Clearly Parliamentarians are not convinced that euthanasia can remain voluntary and be made safe.

“The broader issue of the value of human life was highlighted in a number of speeches with warnings of elder abuse and coercion, dangers evident in Belgium and the Netherlands - two jurisdictions which have legalised euthanasia.”

Mr Flynn said it was inappropriate of Ms Hartland to seek to by-pass the Parliament’s committee system and have the VLRC move the issue straight to draft legislation.

“The Greens keep shopping euthanasia around Australia’s Parliaments. Each time a parliamentary committee hears evidence about the abuses and dangers this policy idea is rejected.

“The idea of euthanasia seems attractive on face value but when the evidence of abuse is examined Australian Parliamentarians don’t buy it.

“It is disappointing that Ms Hartland sought to avoid this scrutiny in her quest to fast-track legislation away from the democratically elected Parliament,” Mr Flynn said.

“Today’s retreat is a win for the dignity of all humans versus the idea that our worth emanates from our utility.

“Palliative care is where our focus for end of life public policy should be, not dangerous doctor-assisted killing of patients.”