This October, Federal Attorney-General Michaelia Cash has said again that the Commonwealth has no plans to overturn the ban on territories having the right to debate VAD. Instead she says , “everybody should have access to quality palliative care”.
Her statement comes after the Northern Territory and Australian Capital Territory (ACT) claimed their right to determine their own rules:
- Australian Northern Territory demands freedom to decide on assisted dying laws – The World Federation of Right to Die Societies (wfrtds.org)
- Canberrans want federal ban overturned – The World Federation of Right to Die Societies (wfrtds.org)
In reaction to this stance, Members of the Legislative Assembly in ACT issued a press statement on it: Joint statement on correspondence received from the commonwealth attorney-general regarding territory rights and the senate standing committee on legal and constitutional affairs report into the ensuring territory rights bill 2021
Now the ACT government is considering its options following the Commonwealth’s refusal to overturn the “Andrews ban”, including taking the issue to the international arena after the next election.
The Northern Territory News carries an article reporting on the Federal Government’s recalcitrance in relation to territories’ rights. It tells us that the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee which has been examining Senator Sam McMahon’s bill has recommended that the bill be considered in parliament. The article sees the report as a good sign that it will be debated later this year, and Senator McMahon thinks that, in a conscience vote, it would pass the Senate.
- Our Right to Decide: Federal government has no plans to repeal euthanasia ban.
- Our Right to Decide: Labor strongly backs ACT rights to decide euthanasia laws
- Minority report from Senator the Hon Kim Carr
- Additional comments from the Australian Greens
- ACT government considering next options in territory rights fight
- Request to allow for voluntary assisted dying laws in ACT and NT denied by Attorney-General Michaelia Cash