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Photo: Rich Turley

Give Australians like Janet a choice

When Janet Cohen was diagnosed with incurable cancer, she knew she didn’t want to suffer the drawn-out, painful death she has seen people close to her have.  

However, as a resident of NSW, Janet is denied access to compassionate Voluntary Assisted Dying laws that are designed to give people living with a terminal illness like her the option to avoid needless suffering in their final days and weeks.

An independent woman with a love of the outdoors, she appreciates the many choices she has had throughout her life – but is devastated that as an adult in NSW with full mental capacity she cannot choose to limit her suffering through an assisted death.

DONATE NOW and help terminally ill Australians like Janet win more control over their deaths, including access to safe and workable Voluntary Assisted Dying laws

Go Gentle Australia was instrumental in helping Victoria (2017) and Western Australia (2019) pass Voluntary Assisted Dying laws. Yet despite these successes, two thirds of Australians still have no access to kinder, more compassionate end-of -life choices.

Equality in law is a fundamental right. It is wrong that some Australians have access to compassionate assisted dying laws while others do not – simply by the lottery of their postcode.

For Janet, the prospect of enduring a painful and prolonged death has made her look for help elsewhere. She decided that, when the time was right, she would travel to Switzerland for a medically assisted death. But now COVID-19 has made international travel exceptionally difficult and potentially robbed her of even that option.

Janet says the Swiss option is a great consolation. But an even greater comfort would be to know that she could die at home, in familiar surroundings, with her loved ones by her side.

“It would stop me from fearing the end of my life, and allow me to live what’s left of it with acceptance and enjoyment,” she says.

Voluntary assisted dying is a viable and safe.

In mid-2019, Voluntary Assisted Dying became legal in Victoria. Medical oncologist Dr Cameron McLaren says the dozens of cases he's been involved in "have been overwhelmingly positive".

Other states are in the early stages of considering similar assisted dying laws, after the hard-fought successful campaigns in VIC and WA.

Your donation today will help give a voice to people living with a terminal illness who want choice, and develop much-needed resources to educate MPs, medical professionals and community groups about the desperate need for kinder, more compassionate end-of-life choices, including Voluntary Assisted Dying.

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Give more Australians the right to choose.

 

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