Western Australian euthanasia inquiry calls for public submissions

Parliament House: A powerful parliamentary committee is calling for submissions from the public on "end of life choices". Photo: Supplied.
Parliament House: A powerful parliamentary committee is calling for submissions from the public on "end of life choices". Photo: Supplied.

A parliamentary inquiry into the legalisation of euthanasia in Western Australia is calling for public submissions.

Chairwoman of the Joint Select Committee on End of Life Choices, Amber‐Jade Sanderson, said the inquiry would be an important opportunity for voters to have their views heard on an issue that affects everyone.

“There is demand within our community for this issue to be examined,” she said.

“We want to give everyone the chance to engage in a process that will explore a range of views and consider proposals for the future.

“Cross‐party select committees can achieve great outcomes by working cooperatively and I genuinely hope for that in this process.

“Although this issue is challenging and contentious, there are principles that we all share: respect for the rights and freedoms that our society provides us and the ability for us to hold fundamentally different views, and compassion for those who are nearing the end of their lives, particularly those suffering under a medical condition that will shorten their lives.”

The committee invited written submissions relating to its terms of reference, which in particular require it to:

  • Assess the practices currently being utilised within the medical community to assist a person to exercise their preferences for the way they want to manage their end of life when experiencing chronic and/or terminal illnesses, including the role of palliative care;
  • Review the current framework of legislation, proposed legislation and other relevant reports and materials in other Australian States and Territories and overseas jurisdictions;
  • Consider what type of legislative change may be required, including an examination of any federal laws that may impact such legislation; and
  • Examine the role of Advanced Health Directives, Enduring Power of Attorney and Enduring Power of Guardianship laws and the implications for individuals covered by these instruments in any proposed legislation.

Further information about the terms of reference and the presentation of submissions can be found on the committee’s website at www.parliament.wa.gov.au/eolcc or by contacting the Legislative Assembly Committee Office on 9222 7494.

Written submissions to the committee close on October 23, 2017.

Ms Amber‐Jade Sanderson can be contacted for comment on 9725 7000.