High-profile comedian and TV host Andrew Denton has challenged Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to find the political will to act on an issue close to his heart.
High-profile comedian and TV host Andrew Denton has challenged Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to find the political will to act on an issue close to his heart.

Comedian throws down gauntlet to Premier on death

HIGH-profile voluntary assisted-dying advocate Andrew Denton has urged Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to have the political will to act on euthanasia.

The comedian and TV host, who watched his father die in pain, believes there could be "political calculation" around why Labor wasn't pushing the legislation through now.

"I encourage the Premier to look at the evidence and to have the political will to act on it," he said.

"Not one more Queenslander will die as a result of voluntary-assisted dying legislation but far fewer will suffer needlessly at end of life."

In August, the State Government announced it was pushing back the parliamentary committee's reporting date from November to March 2020.

Since then Independent MP Sandy Bolton has urged the Government to debate the laws ahead of the October 2020 election.

Retiring MP Jann Stuckey also revealed she would like the chance to cast her vote before she leaves the chamber.

Denton said the evidence already heard by the parliamentary committee was "stark and undeniable".

 

 

He said if the government changed next year, it was highly unlikely the LNP would introduce the legislation.

Asked why he thought the Government hadn't introduced it yet, Denton said: "I think there may be a political calculation from the Premier, that this is something she doesn't want to lose skin over after the abortion law reform.

"I'm a great believer in palliative care, and I think it does an extraordinary job, however in their own words and their own statistics, in the evidence of senior doctors and nurses, there are a group of people who palliative care simply can't help."

A government spokesman said Ms Palaszczuk made end-of-life and aged care part of a committee inquiry which had taken submissions all over Queensland.

"It's yet to report," he said.

"She has said many times that, as someone who has family experience, she has deep feelings on the issue but is respectful of all views.

"She has said that she is watching carefully the implementation of similar legislation in other states."