NSW Legalises Voluntary Assisted Dying, Time to Grant Territories Their Democratic Rights

“The NSW Parliament’s decision to legalise voluntary assisted dying means the Federal Parliament should remove the bar that prevents the ACT and the NT from considering similar legislation,” said Ben Oquist, executive director of the Australia Institute.

“Our research shows the majority of Australians support the Federal Parliament giving back Territory rights on legislating voluntary assisted dying.

“Canberra is a grown up city, and ACT residents should not be second class citizens. The citizens of the ACT deserve the same democratic rights afforded to Australians living in the six states.

“The principle that a person experiencing unrelievable suffering who asks to die should be allowed to receive the assistance of a doctor to do so is a question of humanity. The NSW Parliament ought to be commended for recognising this, and it is time for the 47th Parliament of Australia to follow suit as a matter of priority.

“Congratulations to Alex Greenwich for putting forward the NSW bill, and the 28 co-sponsors from across all parties demonstrating that this is an issue that is above partisanship.”

Polling findings:

  • Three in four Australians (76%) support the Commonwealth allowing Territory Governments to legalise voluntary assisted dying within their jurisdictions.
  • Overwhelming support across all voting intentions for Territory Governments to legalise voluntary assisted dying within their jurisdictions. Coalition voters 74% support, 18% oppose; Labor voters 80% support, 12% oppose; Greens voters 77% support, 15% oppose; One Nation voters 73% support, 14% oppose; and Other voters 67% support, 18% oppose.
  • Three in four Australians (76%) agree with the principle that a person experiencing unrelievable suffering who asks to die should be allowed to receive the assistance of a doctor to do so.

Related research

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