Queensland, Australia euthanasia bill will force religiously affiliated medical institutions to be complicit with killing

By Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

An editorial published in the Weekend Australian on May 22 focuses on a dilemma created by the Queensland Australia euthanasia bill. 

To ensure access, the euthanasia bill forces religiously affiliated medical institutions to be complicit with killing. The editorial states:

Christian churches in Queensland, which operate major hospitals in the state, are facing a serious dilemma. As Walker reports in the news pages, Catholic Archbishop of Brisbane Mark Coleridge and Uniting Church in Queensland moderator Andrew Gunton say the right of institutional conscientious objection the churches had been promised is not explicit in the draft bill.

The editorial urges the Queensland legislature to respect the freedom of religion:

The issue should be clarified in the Queensland legislation before it is voted on. The right of church-run institutions not to co-operate with VAD [Voluntary Assisted Dying] must be respected. Anything less would attack freedom of Christian belief and practice, which forged hospital and nursing care in the Middle Ages and is fundamental to our nation’s traditions. Churches should stand their ground.

An article published by the Medical News GP also comments on the dilemma, stating

Another novel feature is the Queensland bill limits the ability of institutions to object to voluntary assisted dying. This is an Australian-first, as [the states of] Victorian, Western Australian, and Tasmanian laws only deal with permitting individual health professionals to conscientiously object.

If medical institutions are denied the right to object to euthanasia then medical professionals will be the next group forced to participate in euthanasia. 

The euthanasia lobby exists to promote access to euthanasia. Religiously affiliated healthcare institutions need to fight to maintain their rights and duties within a radically secularized culture.

Editor’s note. This appeared on Mr. Schadenberg’s blog [] and is reposed with permission.