The Atheist Foundation of Australia (AFA) supports the two Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) Bills before state Parliaments in NSW and Victoria. This is an important demonstration of evidence-based medical opinion and indisputable patient need triumphing over religious-based misinformation and scaremongering.

Despite the fact, like marriage equality, that 75-80% Australians think that terminally-ill, suffering patients should have the right to end their suffering at a time of their own choosing, surrounded by family and supported by a doctor, we note that the organised religious institutions are opposed. In fact, highly placed representatives of their churches within Government and the Medical profession continue to make outrageous claims about VAD.

The President of the Australian Medical Association has made comments to the extent that VAD is unsafe and open to abuse of vulnerable people. He says that doctors should never be involved in VAD as it negatively affects doctor-patient relationships.

He seems to ignore the 14 jurisdictions around the world where VAD is working well without ANY evidence of abuse and that patients feel open discussion about all options, including VAD, enhance their relationship with their doctor.

We support the position of Doctors for Assisted Dying Choice, Dying With Dignity and Go Gentle Australia. If we strip back the emotive and biased approach of some in our community, to look at the facts, then VAD is an important and overdue
initiative.

The article Voluntary Assisted Dying, an evidence based approach, written by AFA member and pro VAD campaigner Dr David Leaf, illustrates the need for politicians to stop making non evidence-based assertions about VAD and deal with the facts.

Victorians and NSW people should IMMEDIATELY call and/or email their local members TODAY!

 

Kylie Sturgess

President
Atheist Foundation of Australia Inc

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