The Abortion Rights Campaign (ARC) has welcomed the publication of The Independent Review of the Operation of the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018 and urges the Government to decriminalise abortion in all circumstances and extend on-request access throughout pregnancy, repeal the mandatory three-day waiting period, maintain telemedicine for abortion care, and expand abortion services so that people living in rural areas have the same access as those living in towns and cities.
“We want evidence-based human rights compliant healthcare. It is a damning indictment of the failures of our legislation that even though thousands of people have accessed abortion care here in Ireland, hundreds of people are still forced to travel,” said ARC spokesperson Helen Stonehouse.
Ms Stonehouse continued, “Marie O’Shea’s report confirms that the issues we first raised nearly five years ago remain barriers to accessing abortion care. These barriers are present at both a legislative and operational level. Our calls for better abortion services have been ignored. We were repeatedly told that the review was the place for fixing the problems embedded in the law, so now it is on the Government to act.”
“Anything less than free, safe, legal, local, and accessible abortion care for anyone who wants or needs it means pregnant people are forced to travel for the care they should receive at home. Abortion must be available on request throughout pregnancy, free from stigma and shame, without apology or restriction.” Ms Stonehouse concluded.
Notes to Editors
- The Independent Review of the Operation of the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018 is available here https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/13fe5-the-independent-review-of-the-operation-of-the-health-regulation-of-termination-of-pregnancy-act-2018/.
- ARC’s submission for the review of the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018 is available here https://www.abortionrightscampaign.ie/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/ARC_Submission.pdf.
- ARC’s “Too Many Barriers: Experiences of Abortion in Ireland after Repeal” report is available here https://www.abortionrightscampaign.ie/facts/research/.
- The Unplanned Pregnancy and Abortion Care (UnPAC) study is available here: https://www.sexualwellbeing.ie/for-professionals/research/research-reports/unpac.pdf.