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Go Gentle Australia publishes its Spring 2020 Newsletter

Dear member,

Recently, the Tasmanian End of Life Choice (Voluntary Assisted Dying) Bill passed its second reading in the upper house. That is further than any Tasmanian VAD Bill has ever reached. It follows a Herculean effort from Independent MLC Mike Gaffney, who was supported by DWD Tasmania and the Your Choice TAS team.The Bill now moves to the third reading – or committee stage – where each of the 142 clauses is debated one-by-one. If the Bill passes this crucial hurdle, it moves to the lower house.

There is still a long way to go to see this Bill become law. If you are in Tasmania, it has never been more crucial to contact your MPs and urge them to vote YES. Find your the contact details of your MPs using our MP Look-Up tool. Politicians need to hear from you about why a voluntary assisted dying law is so necessary for Tasmanians who are suffering intolerably.If you’re in Queensland, make sure the candidate you’re voting for in the upcoming state election reflects your views on voluntary assisted dying.

As the campaigns in Victoria, Western Australia and now Tasmania have demonstrated, we can never underestimate what people power can achieve. Wherever you live in Australia, make your voice heard on the end of life issues by heading to our new Take Action page.
In South Australia, the parliamentary committee investigating end of life choices is due to release its inquiry report on 15 October. There is also movement in NSW where Dying With Dignity has launched Every Day Matters, a new grassroots campaign for assisted dying laws in Australia’s most populous state. Lastly, it is becoming clear that Covid-19 will be part of our lives for some time yet. To adapt to this new reality we are looking at more ways to connect online. Our Dying to Know Day webinars were hugely popular and we’d love to hear your suggestions about the content of our next webinar series. Please take our very short survey and let us know your thoughts.

Thank you for your help and stay safe.

Best regards
Kiki Paul CEO

PS – Your donations are crucial to help us produce our educational resources and support state-based campaigns for law reform. Please consider sharing this email with three friends who may be able to make a contribution, large or small. Donate here   

Victoria’s VAD law operating safely & effectively in first year
The Victorian Voluntary Assisted Dying Review Board’s appraisal of the first year of the law has revealed 124 terminally ill Victorians have ended their lives through voluntary assisted dying.“It is clear from the report that, in its first year, the law is operating safely and effectively and is providing a welcome choice to terminally ill people at the end of life,” the Board said.  Read more
VAD Review Board report

The religious right’s campaign to spike NZ’s euthanasia referendum
New Zealand heads to the polls on 17 October for a general election and referendum on legalising NZ’s End of Life Choice Act.In the lead-up, an array of conservative Christian political organisations is running an expensive campaign to sow fear and doubt about the safety of the law.  Read more

Why there will always be a need for assisted dying laws
The number one misleading argument against Voluntary Assisted Dying laws is that ‘there would be no need if only palliative care were properly resourced’.Our palliative care systems are among the best in the world. But claims that they can help relieve all suffering are untrue. Here are six reasons why there will always be a need for assisted dying laws. Read more

Judy Dent not ready to give up the fight for Northern Territory VAD law
September marked the 24th anniversary of the death of Bob Dent, the first person to use the Northern Territory’s landmark Rights of the Terminally Ill Act (1995).Bob was one of only four people to make use of the law before it was overturned in 1997 by the federal government. Bob’s widow Judy is determined to see the territories regain the right to pass VAD laws for themselves. Read Judy’s story in memory of Bob on the NTVES Facebook page.

GGA profile: Lisa Hogg’s mother Margaret
Our mother, Margaret, exercised her right to die, on her terms, at the age of 82. It was peaceful, calm, painless and dignified. Several months since, I am still in awe at her bravery and courage and I am so pleased that she lived in Victoria where she had the right to choose. Read more

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Go Gentle Australia, ABN 61 613 668 643 · PO Box 992, St Ives, NSW 2075, Australia