Share your thoughts on Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill
Member for Port Macquarie, Leslie Williams is encouraging people to have their say on the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2017.
“Later this year, a Bill about voluntary assisted dying will be debated in State Parliament. For various reasons, this is an uncomfortable, emotional and complex subject for many people and I'd like to hear your thoughts on the matter.
“I have met with a number of local residents on this subject so I know only too well the passion that some people have on this very sensitive topic,” Mrs Williams said.
“Whilst I have my own personal views, I am very keen to hear from as many people as possible about their thoughts and feelings, either positive or negative.
“To enable more people to have their say on the Bill, I have put a survey on my webpage which I hope residents will take the time to respond.
“If it's passed by Parliament, the Bill provides a legislative framework for patients with a terminal illness in NSW to request and receive help ending their lives with dignity, at a time and place of their choosing,” Mrs Williams said.
“This will give greater options to many people who have made peace, yet find themselves struck with seemingly interminable pain or discomfort. It will be tempered with criteria and protections that prevent abuse, and ensure it’s only used in the right cases.
“To be eligible, a patient must be over 25, live in NSW and have a condition that would prove terminal within a year. If they pass those criteria, they need to undergo a series of checks from qualified doctors, specialists and mental health professionals to check their health and understanding of the process.
“If they have made an informed decision, after a seven day waiting period they have help ending their life in a controlled and compassionate manner. The patient can change their mind at any stage. There are severe penalties imposed for people who may try to influence the decision of patient or medical practitioners involved,” Mrs Williams said.
A full copy of the legislation is now available online, with options for readers to share their feedback. It can be found at www.lesliewilliams.com.au/survey
The Bill is expected to go before Parliament in the Spring sitting.