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TASMANIA: unexpected move forward in assisted dying debate?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Attorney General Lara Giddings of Tasmania announced earlier this month a number of plans for (progressive) law reform in the next four year period of Labour-Green Government. These plans included a private members bill for legalization of euthanasia to be brought to Parliament late next year.



According to an article in The Mercury she told Parliament yesterday she was committed to helping Tasmanians faced with terminal illness die with dignity, pledging to work co-operatively with Greens leader Nick McKim on new voluntary euthanasia laws.
Mr McKim, now a minister in the Labor Cabinet, went to the state election promising voters to continue to fight for the right of gravely ill Tasmanians to die with dignity in doctor-assisted death pacts.

Last November Mr McKim's private member's Dying With Dignity Bill before the 25-member Lower House was defeated 15 votes to seven.

In The Advocate Ms Giddings is said to be hoping some of the 11 new House of Assembly MPs will support her push, with Braddon's Adam Brooks (Liberal) and Paul O'Halloran (Greens) supporting in-principle voluntary euthanasia.

The expectations of DWD Tasmania for a good outcome were tested by anti-euthanasia campaigners who invited notorious anti-euthanasia Wesley Smith from the US to warn Tasmanians for this sort of legislation, using the well known arguments, as reported by ABC News.

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