Repeal and Enact the only option – Sinn Féin
Responding to the recommendations of the Citizens’ Assembly, Sinn Féin health spokesperson, Louise O’Reilly, said that for Sinn Féin the only option on the future of the Eighth Amendment is repeal and enact – repeal the eighth and enact legislation in the Dáil.
Deputy O’Reilly expressed disappointment at the recommendation of the assembly to replace the article in the constitution with amended wording, but stressed that the responsibility must now turn to the Dáil select committee to convene and conclude its work with urgency.
“Sinn Féin has been consistent in our criticism of the government’s attempts to kick the can down the road on the issue of the eighth amendment. We believe that the Citizens’ Assembly served that very purpose. However, the Assembly has done its job and I commend the participants for their work.
“These are recommendations and recommendations alone. This work has not concluded. It is now the job of the select Oireachtas committee to convene and report in a timely manner on this issue. There can be no more delay tactics.
“We in Sinn Féin believe that the constitution is not the appropriate place to deal with this issue. It never was and it never will be. A recommendation to amend this article will not address the very real problems faced by women every day who face harrowing ordeals in obtaining the care they need. It will further prolong their suffering.
“For us the only option is repeal and enact – repeal the eighth amendment and enact the necessary legislation in the Dáil.
“Sinn Féin recognises the hurt, anguish and lasting damage caused by a diagnosis of fatal foetal abnormality and pregnancy as a result of a crime. That is why we want to see terminations available in the instances of rape, incest and fatal foetal abnormality.
“That is why we must act decisively and enact legislation that will address this. And that is what myself and my colleague Deputy Jonathan O’Brien will argue strongly for in the select Oireachtas committee.
“That committee must now do its job. It must act with urgency and conclude its work before the summer recess. There can be no more delays. Women cannot wait.”