Report No. 10, 57th Parliament - Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2021

Committee's report

The committee’s report was tabled on Friday 20 August 2021. A copy of the report can be accessed here.

About the Bill

On Tuesday 25 May 2021, the Hon Annastacia Palaszczuk MP, Premier and Minister for Trade, introduced the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2021 (Bill) into Parliament.

View: Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2021
View: Explanatory Notes
View: Statement of Compatibility
View: Explanatory Speech – to watch the Premier introduce the Bill click here.

Purpose of the Bill

The Bill is part of a long and considered process to weigh up whether Queenslanders who are dying should have a choice over the time and circumstances of their death. The Bill has been referred to the Health and Environment Committee (committee) for detailed consideration. The committee must report back to the Parliament by Friday 20 August 2021.

The explanatory notes state that the main purposes of the Bill are to:

  • give persons who are suffering and dying, and who meet eligibility criteria, the option of requesting medical assistance to end their lives
  • establish a lawful process for eligible persons to exercise that option
  • establish safeguards to:
    • ensure that the process is accessed only by persons who are assessed to be eligible
    • protect vulnerable persons from coercion and exploitation
  • provide legal protection for health practitioners who choose to assist, or not to assist, persons to exercise the option of ending their lives in accordance with the Act, and
  • establish a Voluntary Assisted Dying Review Board and other mechanisms to ensure compliance with the Act.

 The Queensland Law Reform Commission (QLRC) has prepared diagrams stepping out the proposed process. These diagrams are available in the QLRC’s A legal framework for voluntary assisted dying in Queensland (4 page summary).

Background

This Bill is framed within a broader policy debate on the desirability or otherwise of introducing voluntary assisted dying legislation in Queensland. The consideration of this broader policy was undertaken by the Health, Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Committee from 2018 to 2020. That inquiry held 34 hearings across Queensland, heard from 502 witnesses and considered the views and stories provided in 4,719 submissions. A link to that inquiry is available here.

Click here to see a timeline of the work undertaken in relation to this Bill. This process included work undertaken by the QLRC available here.

Submissions

Submissions closed on 2 July 2021.  The submissions are available under the submissions tab.

Timeline

Submissions closed:2 July 2021 
Public briefing – Brisbane:Monday 14 June 2021 program - broadcast - transcript
Public hearing – Townsville:Monday, 12 July 2021 program - transcript
Public hearing – Rockhampton:Tuesday, 13 July 2021program - transcript
Public hearings – Brisbane:Wednesday, 14 July 2021 program - broadcast - part 1 - part 2 - transcript
 Thursday, 15 July 2021 program - broadcast - transcript
 Friday, 16 July 2021program - broadcast - transcript
Report due date:Friday, 20 August 2021 

Related information

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Submissions