SYDNEY, Australia, July 3, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – More than 19 bills to legalise euthanasia have been introduced into Australian parliaments since 2002 (Footnote: See appendix below).
In the current South Australian parliament, a voluntary euthanasia bill has been introduced on five separate occasions, the latest one being defeated 22-20 as recently as June 15 of this year.
In the wake of these developments, Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, and one of the world’s leading opponents of euthanasia and assisted suicide, arrived last week for a speaking tour of Australia.
His journey through three Australian capitals lasted a week and included speaking at the annual Life Coalition dinner in Melbourne.
“One of the reasons I love this work is the calibre and the quality of the people that you tend to meet, and that was certainly borne out through the whole trip,” said Paul Russell, Executive Director of HOPE: Preventing Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide. “Generally it was a fantastic exercise in building coalitions and creating new networks… and working with all sorts of people from all sorts of backgrounds who are with us on this one particular issue.
Not long before Schadenberg arrived in Tasmania, another euthanasia bill was announced there by Greens leader Nick McKim. Schadenberg organised a press conference on the steps of Parliament House and had the opportunity to warn local parliamentarians about the overseas experience of legalising euthanasia.
While he was there, Philip Nitschke – Australia’s most enthusiastic euthaniser – announced his plans to introduce mobile euthanasia clinics in Tasmania should the bill be passed.
On a New Zealand local television program, Schadenberg engaged Labour MP Maryan Street in a vigorous debate on fundamentals of the issue. Street is currently drafting a bill titled the End of Life Choice bill.
While in Austalia, the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition head was also pre-occupied with events unfolding up-top in his native Canada, where on June 15 a BC judge – Justice Lynn Smith – ruled that laws against assisted suicide were unconstitutional.
The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition is calling on Canadians to urge Justice Minister Rob Nicholson to launch an appeal to the B.C. Court of Appeals.
LifeSiteNews presents an exclusive video report in which Schadenberg presents an emphatic explanation of the dangers of legalized euthanasia and assisted suicide, an urgent plea to his fellow Canadians to contact the Justice Minister and comments on developments in Australia.
Appendix: Attempts to Legalise Euthanasia in Australia since 2002:
Federal Parliament (4 bills) :
Victoria (2 bills):
Medical Treatment (Physician Assisted Dying) Bill 2008
Tasmania (1 bill):
Dying with Dignity Bill 2009
South Australia (9 bills):
Dignity in Dying Bill 2002
The Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2006
Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2007
Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2008
Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2010
Consent to Medical Treatment and Palliative Care (End of Life Arrangements) Amendment Bill 2010
Voluntary Euthanasia Bill 2012