West Australian Catholics are being called to join a rally on the steps of the state's Parliament House in Perth next month to oppose the introduction of physician-assisted suicide. Source: The Record.
The Coalition for the Defence of Human Life will hold the "Care: Not Killing" rally at midday on Wednesday, September 4. Protesters will hear from medical and legal experts on the risks and impact of assisted suicide in the jurisdictions that have legalised it.
Darryl Budge, the state director of Family Voice Australia, one of the campaign managers of the Coalition for the Defence of Human Life, said the issue was critical in stopping the medical system from changing doctors into killers.
“Under this proposed bill, doctors will be obliged to provide information to patients on how to access voluntary assisted dying in Western Australia,” Mr Budge said.
He said the bill is one of the most unsafe models of voluntary euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide in the world.
“It allows a doctor to steer a patient towards suicide because they are legally able to raise it as a medical treatment. This is not the case in Victoria,” Mr Budge said.
“Furthermore, in the cases of a patient experiencing mental health issues, there is no obligation for a doctor to refer a patient to a mental health practitioner,” he said.
“The other reason why this bill is a concern is that patients only need two doctors to sign off on the service.
“It invites people to ‘doctor shop’; they [the doctors] don’t need to know you, or have any skill, training or experience in your medical condition, nor skill or training in palliative care. It is not a humane medical plan at all,” Mr Budge said.
In November 2017, Victoria became the first Australian state to pass legislation to make assisted suicide legal for the terminally ill, and the law came into effect in June.
The WA Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2019 contains fewer safeguards than the Victorian model. Debate on the bill is expected to commence after August 28.