Townsville Bulletin

Treat people with dignity and fairness


TODAY brought the tragic story of Brendan Luxton, the fine man who sadly took his own life trying to get exemption from the Premier’s Queensland Health exemption service. His family deserves all our compassion, and support right now in their loss.

This tragedy was, on the evidence to date, almost certainly preventabl­e, particular­ly in the light of the apparent repeated attempted interventi­ons of his family, which seem to have been callously disregarde­d. The tragedy was probably inevitable, the way the Premier’s exemption policy is being applied.

It is no excuse to say: “There is a pandemic on.” Politician­s and policymake­rs have a public and legal duty to treat people with dignity and fairness. That remains the law in Queensland. The temporary powers that politician­s are impliedly granted by the electorate during a pandemic still have to be applied for peace, order and good governance, and not for electoral popularity. No one in Queensland will tolerate someone’s loved ones being mistreated so callously as were Brendan’s.

The Premier’s system treated me, a cancer patient trying to get home, quite disgracefu­lly, and has quite unreasonab­ly caused major distress for many many others. That is nothing compared to today’s news of the loss of a very fine man in Brendan Luxton.

Could not the Premier, with all the repeated publicity of the previous rejections of so many deserving cases, foreseen that sooner or later it would come to this?

In my own experience, there is something very wrong with an exemption unit process that delays decisions, refuses to give reasons, applies policy inflexibly irrespecti­ve of merit, and disregards medical recommenda­tions.

Queensland Health’s job is supposed to be about saving lives. The Premier’s exemption service is a disaster awaiting further tragedies. Today’s tragic news took political indifferen­ce to a whole new level. The Premier should now resign.



It is chilling to see how enthusiast­ic so many people are about voluntary assisted dying, which few realistic people can believe will remain genuinely voluntary for long.

It is understand­able that some people might wish to bring their lives to an end for a variety of reasons and all decent people extend empathy and compassion to them, but this does not mean that the law ought to be changed to facilitate their wishes.

Many people, especially elderly people, are already vulnerable to malicious actions by others. Each year in Australia in excess of 100,000 people suffer elder abuse with at least another 30,000 suffering neglect.

The majority of this abuse is perpetrate­d by carers or by family members, often with financial gain as a motive. It would be negligent to believe that such people would not seek to exploit a change in the law in order to pursue their goals.

Similarly, many elderly, infirm or even disabled people would feel under pressure to “do the decent thing” and remove themselves “from being a burden” to others. We know this is the case because many individual­s have said so. The key considerat­ion is whether a change in the law would put increased numbers of vulnerable people at increased risk of harm; it is untenable to think it would not. PHILIP COLE, Kirwan


The intersecti­on at Meenan St and Old Common Rd has been open nearly a year now, but as a resident and regular user of the “airport” road I scratch my head daily at the reasoning and who is responsibl­e for making this intersecti­on some sort of one-way loop that is clearly intended for airport traffic only.

While using Old Common Rd as a bypass is a lot quicker now, it still has this crazy detour built into it because coming from the city you can’t turn left on to Meehnan or right into Old Common from Garbutt, so instead of a regular T intersecti­on with a stop sign you have this crazy U turn detour

150m down from the place you want to go. Why?

I’ve never seen anything like it. Is there any universe where the council and/or airport can collaborat­e in making this inconvenie­nt intersecti­on into something intended for all road users and not just the airport. CHRISTIAN LAFFIN,

Belgian Gardens

Omrog, 4814. These submarines won’t be commission­ed till about 2040 if on time, any defence the mainland has will be taken out in a first strike anyway so at least they can retaliate. The sun and wind worshipper­s should be overjoyed at their power source.


When is Qld going to get the borders open, sick of hearing what Victoria and NSW are doing telling them when they have a choices. Why are our health minister and premier hiding from the people of Qld who would like to go interstate instead of doing hotel quarantine at their own expense when they come back to Qld. When we get to 80 per cent

My 88 yr old husband had his first Pfizer vac. at the walk-in centre on Saturday and he can’t speak highly enough about the whole experience! He was impressed by the layout and all the staff from the parking attendants to admin and the nurses! Well done to everyone involved.

vaccinated will they open up the borders or are they sitting on their hands as usual. What do the people of Qld think. NOT HAPPY 4816

At long last our medical emergency department staff are getting the recognitio­n they deserve. The Townsville University Hospital also has dedicated doctors, nurses and reception personnel, along with volunteers, that serve constantly for our wellbeing. Thank you all.


Steven Miles refused to meet Phil Thompson to discuss projects around the Townsville City Deal. And now Minister Mark Bailey is blocking Senator Matt Canavan from a

meeting about the Inland Rail from Toowoomba to Gladstone. More proof Petty Palaszczuk and her government are the real reason projects are stalled in this state. JR 4810.

Dot from Douglas, no we are not going to get funding improvemen­ts for palliative care it is cheaper to allow those people in need to simply choose to die rather than give adequate palliative care. They will be ably supported and encouraged by their inheritanc­e impatient offspring. I hope and pray that I am never in this situation where I have to depend on the government at the end of my life. DANNY MT LOUISA

The Premier of Qld is way too clever for her own good, she should make the most of sticking the boot into Gladys Berejiklia­n. The wheels are going to fall off her little red fire engine and finally the voters in Qld will see if she handles things any differentl­y than Gladys. RON KELSO. DM Condon – clearly you have no idea about VAD, which is aimed at terminally ill patients, not a new method of suicide for those struggling with mental health issues. WHITTY

 ??  ?? Brendan Luxton
Brendan Luxton
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