Queensland bill will ‘crush’ conscientious objection

Steven Miles (Facebook Steven Miles MP)

Queensland Deputy Premier Steven Miles says Church-run hospitals and nursing homes must allow voluntary euthanasia for terminally ill patients who can’t or won’t be moved. Source: The Australian.

Mr Miles’ insistence that Queensland’s euthanasia scheme will not offer a blanket right of institutional conscientious objection has outraged Church leaders, who accused the government of reneging on its commitments.

Catholic Health Australia – which provides 10,000 hospital beds and 25,000 aged-care places across the country – said legislation now before Queensland Parliament would “crush” conscientious objection. The Bill is certain to pass on the anticipated votes of Labor and Greens MPs.

Rebecca Burdick Davies, CHA’s director of strategy and mission, said the bill allows for doctors to perform euthanasia on patients or residents of Catholic facilities without asking for permission or notifying the facility.

Mr Miles yesterday outlined how euthanasia legislation would impact faith-based care facilities in situations where a terminally ill patient wanting to die could not be moved from the premises or, in the case of aged-care residents, whose recognised place of residence was the nursing home.

While the legislation provided an institutional ability to object, with the patient required to be transferred to a facility that does offer euthanasia, this right could be overridden, Mr Miles said.

Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge said Mr Miles’ remarks were disappointing but not surprising.

FULL STORY

Labor’s hard line threatens showdown on voluntary dying (By Jamie Walker and Lydia Lynch, The Australian)  

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