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Thursday, 30 November 2017
Page: 9403


Senator URQUHART (TasmaniaOpposition Whip in the Senate) (17:30): I rise to read out a statement in relation to how the Labor Party will be dealing with this. Voluntary assisted dying laws are principally a matter for state parliaments. The Victorian parliament has recently passed legislation to allow voluntary assisted dying in that state for a limited number of people and under strict circumstances and safeguards. This followed years of consultation with experts and the Victorian community, and lengthy debate in both houses of the Victorian parliament. Given that this is a sensitive and complex issue, Labor has previously allowed a conscience vote to its members—that is, Labor senators have not been bound to vote in a particular way. We will take the same approach to this motion today.