Voluntary assisted dying program on SBS

Watch out for the SBS Insight program with host Jenny Brockie which is looking at how voluntary assisted dying is working in Australia.

8.30pm – 9.35pm, Tuesday 3rd March 2020, and

3.25pm – 4.25pm, Wednesday 4th March 2020.

If you miss it, it will be available on SBSOnDemand after the broadcast.

Victoria was the first state to pass legislation on Voluntary Assisted Dying in 2017 and the Act came into effect on 19 June 2019 meaning Victorians who are at the end of life and who meet strict eligibility criteria can now request access to voluntary assisted dying.  Here is the Health Vic website for details.

8 months on, 130 Victorians have applied and 52 have acted on the laws to legally end their lives. This is more than was anticipated but, by all accounts the law is working as intended.

The other states:

  • The WA State Parliament has passed similar laws in December 2019 but will take 18 months to implement.
  • NSW upper house voted down, by one vote, a bill on voluntary assisted dying in 2017.
  • South Australia also lost its voluntary assisted dying bill by one vote in 2016.
  • The Queensland Parliamentary inquiry into aged care, end-of-life and palliative care and voluntary assisted dying is due to report by 31 March 2020.
  • A private members bill will shortly be introduced in the Tasmanian Legislative Council in 2020 by independent member for Mersey Mike Gaffney.

The Democrats have been longstanding supporters of this reform and are pleased to see it working well in Victoria.

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