Two years ago, abortion services commenced in Ireland following the historic vote to Repeal the Eighth Amendment. The law allows for abortion on request up to 12 weeks, and after that only in very limited circumstances. In 2021, the government is required to review the operation of the abortion law. This review gives us the opportunity to remove barriers to abortion access that are built into the law and secure much needed improvements. The review also gives the vocal minority who still oppose legal abortion a chance to try to roll back some of our hard-won rights. Anti-choice lobbyists have not given up and neither have we.
Here are some actions you can take today:
- Share our survey on abortion access! Available in 11 languages, our survey is open to people who have had, or tried to have, an abortion in Ireland since January 2019. This survey will help us gather information for the review. It’s crucial that our laws reflect the needs of those directly affected by them.
- Share our blog posts, insta stories, and more on your platforms to spread the word about #RepealReview.
- Write to your TDs to tell them that free, safe, legal and local abortion is important to you and you will be watching as the review takes place.
These are just a few of the many ways to #ResolveToGetInvolved in 2021. Join the open meeting or get in touch with us at [email protected] to find out about more ways you can get involved.
Some changes we are pushing for in this review:
- Full decriminalisation of abortion
- Repeal of the 12-week limit for abortion on request
- Repeal of mandatory three-day waiting period
- Telemedicine (allowing people to take all pills at home) as a permanent feature of abortion care
- Gender-inclusive language to recognise trans, non-binary and intersex people
- Repeal of ambiguous wording that creates a chill factor for doctors after 12 weeks, especially regarding abortions for health risks and ‘fatal’ foetal diagnoses
- Repeal of refusal of care (aka ‘conscientious objection’), which is limiting access to abortion
- Better access in rural areas
- Safe access zones so that doctors, nurses and pregnant people can provide and access abortion without harassment
- An end to deceptive rogue ‘crisis pregnancy’ agencies
While we are grateful for every person who is able to access an abortion in Ireland, we are also disappointed to see so many of our predictions that the law would fall short come true. To name just two problems: 1) people are still having to travel after getting a diagnosis of foetal abnormality; 2) people are still having to travel after experiencing a failed medical abortion and confirming that they are still pregnant after 12 weeks.
If we harness the people power of the repealers, we can address these problems in 2021 and achieve free, safe, legal and local abortion for everyone in Ireland.