Together for Yes Statement on Today’s March

Campaign urges people to remember 170,000 women who have travelled to the UK for abortion since 1983  

Together for Yes, the national campaign to remove the Eighth Amendment, today urged people to remember that at least 170,000 women in Ireland have travelled to the UK for abortions since the Amendment was introduced in 1983.

Ailbhe Smyth, Co-Director for Together for Yes, said: “We understand that the people who will be marching today in Dublin have deeply held beliefs about abortion. However, on this day, we must also remember that since we woke up this morning, at least 9 women in Ireland got up from their beds, left their homes, boarded a flight, and travelled a lonely journey to a clinic somewhere in the UK to have an abortion. A further 3 women will take an abortion pill at home today, without any support from a doctor or medical professional. The difficulty of their personal experiences is compounded by the fact that what they are doing is unsupported and completely unregulated.”

Orla O’Connor, Co-Director for Together for Yes, said: “These women don’t have megaphones. These women won’t be seen on television. These women won’t be heard on radio. They won’t be heard because they have no voice. They are invisible. They are invisible, they are silent and they are suffering because the Eighth Amendment criminalises them for deciding to have an abortion in their own country and they cannot speak out for fear of being sanctioned. This referendum is about these women.”

Sarah Monaghan, spokesperson for Together for Yes, added: “We understand that many people may be uncomfortable with the idea of abortion. As part of the Together for Yes campaign, we will be talking to people across the country and taking our message to every street corner, every community and every home in Ireland. The decision to have an abortion is a personal and private matter between a woman, her doctor and her family – it is not a matter for the Constitution. Women deserve to have safe, regulated abortion care in line with best medical practice so that they can be cared for and supported in their own country, by their families and doctors.”