Tasmania's most senior Catholic has denounced proposed voluntary assisted dying laws set to be debated in the State Parliament, saying they would undermine "the sacredness of life".
Archbishop of Hobart Julian Porteous addressed the Australian Christian Lobby's Tasmanian conference on Saturday, which was held via online video conferencing platform Zoom.
"We have now a bill before us, once again in Tasmania, challenging the sacredness of human life," he said.
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"This is the third time I'll be involved in a campaign on this question of assisted suicide. The last campaign we had was wonderfully successful.
"Let's have confidence that, as we engage in this new campaign, that we have, and I think by the grace of God, been successful in the past.
"Let's go forward hoping and trusting that God will guide us and help us and we'll find a way, again, to protect human life."
Tasmanian Liberal senator Eric Abetz also spoke to those tuned in to the conference, admitting that "the numbers are not in our favour" when it came to the looming parliamentary vote on the issue of voluntary assisted dying.
Independent Mersey MLC Mike Gaffney intends to introduce his bill in the Legislative Council in late August.
An e-petition sponsored by Tasmanian Greens leader Cassy O'Connor is seeking support for voluntary assisted dying laws. The petition has so far attracted more than 7500 signatures.
If Tasmania legalises voluntary assisted dying, it would become the third Australian jurisdiction to do so, joining Victoria and Western Australia.
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