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Nats secure expanded public consultation for voluntary assisted dying laws

More regional  people will be able to participate in face-to-face consultation on Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) reforms after The Nationals WA fought to extend the number of public meetings across the State.

Last month the State Government’s Taskforce announced meetings in Kalgoorlie, Geraldton, Broome, Bunbury and Mandurah, leaving people in the Pilbara, Great Southern, Gascoyne and Wheatbelt with no opportunity to engage with the experts tasked with formulating the legislation. 

Leader Mia Davies said The Nationals WA had immediately written to the Minister for Health and asked the Minister in-person for additional public hearings. 

“It’s vitally important that people living in regional WA are given the opportunity to have their thoughts and concerns heard, and ask questions of the expert panel,” Ms Davies said.

“This consultation series will guide the creation of some of the most important legislation to go through WA Parliament in years, and regional residents deserve to have a voice at that table.

“I welcome the announcement by the Minister for Health that there will now be additional public forums and information sessions in Carnarvon, Karratha, Northam and Albany. 

“We thank him for recognising the importance of allowing regional families and communities a chance to have their say on VAD reforms.”

Ms Davies encouraged as many residents to attend the forum as possible.

“For those that can’t attend we’ve requested the Minister consider using the Community Resource Centre network to at least broadcast the meetings,” Ms Davies said. 

“Sharing your personal stories and community experiences will help to ensure the development of well informed, safe and compassionate VAD reforms.

“Those who are unable to attend a session in person are also able to make a written submission, which will be considered by the Ministerial Expert Panel.”

Upcoming regional VAD public consultation sessions:

  • Broome: 11am-2pm, Thursday 2 May, Broome Civic Centre, 7 Weld Street.
  • Bunbury:11am-2pm, Monday 6 May, Quality Hotel Lighthouse (Koombana Room) 2 Marlston Drive.
  • Mandurah:4:30pm-7:30pm, Monday 13 May. The Sebel Hotel, 1 Marco Polo Drive.
  • Public forums will also be held in Carnarvon, Karratha and Northam. Full registration and venue details are still to be confirmed.
  • Targeted information sessions to assist with providing written feedback will be scheduled in Albany. Full details are still to be confirmed.

To register to attend a public consultation session, or to access more information on Voluntary Assisted Dying reforms visit www.health.wa.gov.au/voluntaryassisteddyingWritten submissions must be lodged by May 24, 2019.

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