Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill personal for Greens MP

Monday, 19th November 2018

For one upper house MP, the fight to give people choice at the end of their lives is a personal one that has driven his work during his long tenure in WA’s Parliament.

Greens MP Robin Chapple first introduced assisted dying legislation in 2002 and again in 2010, although both attempts were unsuccessful. He now feels that WA is closer than ever to achieving this long-awaited reform.

“I remember the extraordinary pain that my mother went through at the end of her life, and that has driven me ever since to make sure that people have the choice for a peaceful and dignified passing.

“Having a close family member suffer so terribly is something that stays with you. It marks you, and you never forget it. So many people have been through similar with their loved ones, it truly is a harrowing thing to watch.

“That’s why one of the first Bills I ever put forward in Parliament was to allow voluntary assisted dying in WA. Almost two decades later, it really does make me quite emotional to see how far we have come as a state.

“84% support is simply overwhelming, and I think that that level of support transcends politics or parties because it is an issue that cuts to the core of who we are as people, and the control that we have over our own lives as we reach the end of our time here.

“The numbers are tight in the upper house, and I’m hoping to have the opportunity to talk personally with my fellow MPs, not just to tell my own story but to hear theirs as well.

“It is so rare for MPs to have this opportunity to work across the aisle on legislation such as this, and I’m hopeful that we can build some lasting relationships across parties.

“My fellow Mining and Pastoral MPs and I have a particular interest in regional WA and making sure that palliative care is rolled out properly as an option for people.

“What I saw as part of the committee process was that regional WA has it tough when it comes to services, so all regional MPs will no doubt want to ensure that there is access to palliative care and other services alongside the option of voluntary assisted dying.

“This is such a personal issue for me, but also for the people of WA. Voluntary Assisted Dying is about compassion and choice, and I am hopeful we will see compassion prevail.”

Media contact: Liam Carter – 0449 151 490

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