ACT Greens MLAs Shane Rattenbury and Caroline Le Couteur have welcomed the Victorian Government’s decision today to allow a conscience vote on dying with dignity legislation, and re-launched their Dying with Dignity campaign here in the ACT.
“The people of the ACT, just like all Australians, should have the right to make choices about their death, just as they have the right to make decisions about their lives,” said Shane Rattenbury, MLA.
"I am encouraged by the decision of the Victorian Government to allow a conscience vote on dying with dignity legislation. The ACT and Victoria are progressive jurisdictions who have pursued similar reforms when it comes to medicinal cannabis and Safe Schools. I am frustrated that the ACT is held back from legislating dying with dignity laws for our citizens as well by the discriminatory and archaic ‘Andrews Law’.”
ACT Greens MLA and spokesperson for Seniors Caroline Le Couteur called for the repeal of the ‘Andrews Law’, and for the ACT Government to legislate to allow people to die peacefully and on their own terms.
“At the end of their life, citizens in the ACT should have the right to make choices. They should have the right to die with dignity, how and when they choose.
“Of course, it will be crucial that we ensure the right protections are in place against exploitation and abuse. However, the Greens believe that we can secure those protections while also giving people who are suffering, who are very ill and who are dying, the right to make decisions about the end of their lives.
"All of us will be affected by death at some point, and the vast majority of Australians want to know that they - and the people they love - will have the right to make important, personal decisions about how and when they die if they are in pain or suffering," concluded Ms Le Couteur.
The ACT Greens today re-launched their campaign to repeal the discriminatory Andrews Bill after tabling the first 750 signatures in the Senate last year: http://www.actgreens.org.au/dying_with_dignity