Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk shocked Queenslanders at yesterday’s ALP election campaign launch by announcing that a re-elected Labor government would introduce legislation for assisted suicide in February 2021. This position sidelines an important Law Reform Commission report due in March 2021.
ACL’s Queensland Director, Wendy Francis, said, “Queensland Labor has made this a life-or-death election. Assisted suicide is not the humane course of action for those whose prognosis is physically terminal. A truly caring society provides therapeutic care, invests in the health system to provide effective pain management; and assures every Queenslander that their dignity is inherent by virtue of their humanity, not determined by their diminished physical capacity. The most loving response is to leave no stone unturned providing quality of life for Queenslanders, not to kill them.”
“Introducing assisted suicide legislation creates an atmosphere of coercion, where vulnerable loved ones who do ‘not want to be a burden’ can feel obliged to choose suicide over proper medical support, pain relief and palliative care.”
The Australian Medical Association’s position statement on assisted suicide states: “The AMA believes that doctors should not be involved in interventions that have as their primary intention the ending of a person’s life. This does not include the discontinuation of treatments that are of no medical benefit to a dying patient.”
“The Premier keeps saying that her most important job is to keep Queenslanders safe,” Mrs Francis continued. “Introducing assisted suicide is the very opposite of that. Doctors and family members will be asked to make decisions about killing not caring.
“This life-or-death election presents a clear choice to voters. Labor has just backed a rush into euthanasia laws. The LNP has indicated it will not.”