Tasmanian parliament resumes debate

The final vote on the legislation is expected next year (Bigstock)

Debate on euthanasia will commence in Tasmania’s lower house this week, with one MP strongly voicing his opposition to “physician-assisted suicide”. Source: The Mercury.

The bill to allow people suffering from a terminal illness to choose to end their life passed the Legislative Council earlier this month, and must now pass the House of Assembly.

Bass Liberal MP Michael Ferguson said he had only been given the bill in recent weeks, with Premier Peter Gutwein announcing an independent inquiry into the legislation and its consequences.

Mr Ferguson said the debate would start this week but will be presented again for a final vote after the inquiry has reported.

He said he would not support the legislation as he did not “believe in physician-assisted suicide” and the bill crossed a line he would not be prepared to cross.

Meanwhile, Queensland Law Reform Commission chairman Peter Applegarth has urged the state’s newly returned Labor government to be “realistic” about fast-tracking legislation that promises to be the tipping point for the rollout of voluntary euthanasia in Australia, The Australian reports.

Queensland Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman would not say yesterday whether a bill to legalise euthanasia would go before state parliament in February in line with an election commitment to advance the deadline for the QLRC to frame it.

Justice Applegarth, a sitting Supreme Court judge, revealed the agency was talking to Ms Fentiman about a “realistic time frame”.

FULL STORY

‘Freedom of choice’: voluntary assisted dying Bill debated (By Kasey Wilkins, The Mercury)

‘Be realistic’ to pass voluntary euthanasia law (The Australian)

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