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Time to Repeal the 8th and trust women – Ó Broin

9 March, 2018 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD

Sinn Féin TD for Dublin Mid-West Eoin Ó Broin has welcomed the publication of the Bill to repeal the Eighth Amendment.

Speaking on the Bill in the Dáil this morning, Deputy Ó Broin said:

“Yesterday, thousands took to the streets of Dublin to mark International Women’s Day and to call for the repeal of the Eighth Amendment from the Constitution.

“An issue of women’s healthcare should never have been placed in the Constitution in the first place.

“The time has come to trust women and to legislate for access to abortion in a considered and compassionate way.

“I welcome the policy paper on the issue published by the government today. It recognises that no woman’s health including psychological health should be put at risk by forcing her to full term.

“It also acknowledges that no family should be forced through the trauma of fatal foetal abnormality – and that every family’s individual decision must be respected.

“It recognises that no woman should be criminalised for having an abortion. I believe these are positions which the majority of people in this state can support.

“The policy paper also recognises that in order to provide terminations for survivors of rape and incest an unrestricted period of access to terminations must be provided in consultation with medical professionals.

“Sinn Féin’s current party policy does not include this provision and, like other parties and sections of Irish society more generally, people are anxious about this proposal.

“I can understand that but my personal belief is that if you do not believe a survivor of rape or incest should be forced to carry to full term then this is the only way this can be achieved.

“Sinn Féin will be discussing this issue in the coming weeks and I am hopeful that those of us already convinced can persuade our party colleagues of the merit of this view.

“We need legislation that is humane, that is compassionate and that respects women’s health and women’s choices.

“There are those of us in the Oireachtas who would like the legislation to go further and there are others who would prefer it to be more restrictive.

“However, all of us who believe that the status quo ill serves women have a responsibility to work together and to campaign together to deliver change.

“We must speak to those with genuine concerns and anxieties while being respectful of their opinions. We must do everything we can to convince them that women are best served by repealing the 8th Amendment.” 

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