Media Release: Monday, 26 March, 2007

The tenth anniversary of the overturning of the Northern Territory’s voluntary euthanasia law is a reason for celebrating, not drumming up protest, according to the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL).

ACL managing director Jim Wallace said that today marks an occasion in Australia’s history when, in a conscience vote, politicians from both major political parties stood up for the value of life over a law with terrible repercussions for society.

“Each and every person is of unique value regardless of their physical or mental state,” Mr Wallace said.

“What a blight on Australian society it would have been to allow for the killing of people rather than seeking to ease their pain through better palliative care.

“How long would it have been before seriously ill elderly people felt pressured, even just in their own minds, to have their lives ended so that they would not be a burden to their loved ones?”

Mr Wallace said that even some of the cases championed by the pro-euthanasia movement have highlighted the problems that can arise. For example, following the 2002 death of Nancy Crick many people were surprised to find out that she was not terminally ill.

“The over-turning of a very bad Northern Territory law is cause for celebration, not street action. This anniversary is also a reminder of the need to value people and to express our gratitude to the many doctors, nurses and others who care for people approaching death.”

Contact: Glynis Quinlan