Why the fight for Irish women’s abortion rights isn’t over

Why the fight for Irish women’s abortion rights isn’t over
Despite at-home termination methods being made available to the rest of the UK, women and girls in Northern Ireland are still being put at risk

By Brooke Theis
Apr 15, 2020

Last October, women in Northern Ireland celebrated as the country voted for their rights to have an abortion. A safe abortion, where they were no longer forced to drain their bank accounts secretly travelling over to England, or risk their lives taking illegal online pills – rights that women in the rest of the UK have had since the late Sixties.

Although laws permitting all terminations in Northern Ireland within the first 12 months of pregnancy were meant to come into effect on 31 March, the government missed this deadline. The coronavirus crisis, the lockdown and mounting pressures on health services are claimed to be the reason for the delay. Meanwhile, in the rest of the UK temporary measures have been put in place to allow women and girls to self-manage abortion at home with pills approved by the World Health Organisation.

Continued: https://www.harpersbazaar.com/uk/culture/a32154454/the-fight-for-irish-womens-abortion-rights-isnt-over/


Amid COVID-19 pandemic, a landmark week for abortion care access in Northern Ireland

Amid COVID-19 pandemic, a landmark week for abortion care access in Northern Ireland

April 11, 2020
Mary McGill

Belfast — After a chaotic week that saw outcry from pro-choice campaigners and abortion providers on both sides of the Irish Sea, Northern Ireland moved to ensure abortion services will be available during the pandemic. In a statement issued to the media on Thursday, April 9, the region’s Department of Health said medical professionals were now permitted to “terminate pregnancies lawfully.” The statement also claimed that the rollout of abortion services, which were meant to have been legally available beginning March 31, had been impacted by the pandemic and “the urgent need to focus resources on preparing the health and social care system for the surge in cases.”

The government’s decision comes after a tumultuous two weeks in which abortion services were supposed to be operational yet remained inaccessible through Northern Ireland’s health service.

Continued: https://womensmediacenter.com/women-under-siege/amid-covid-19-pandemic-a-landmark-week-for-abortion-care-access-in-northern-ireland


Abortions ‘can now be carried out’ in Northern Ireland

Abortions 'can now be carried out' in Northern Ireland

By Jayne McCormack, BBC News NI Political Reporter
9 April 2020

Medical professionals in NI can now "terminate pregnancies lawfully", the Department of Health has said.

Last month, abortion laws changed to permit terminations up to 12 weeks, but this had not been put into practice.

Some of NI's health trusts had been told by the department not to proceed with temporary plans.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-52234712


British provider to post abortion pills to ensure Northern Irish women have access during pandemic

British provider to post abortion pills to ensure Northern Irish women have access during pandemic
It said that under Northern Irish law it was only legally permitted to provide abortion for the purpose of preventing grave, permanent injury to the woman's physical or mental health

Amanda Ferguson, Reuters
April 9, 2020

BELFAST — Britain’s leading provider of abortions said it will offer abortion pills to women in Northern Ireland by post to avoid them having to travel to England by ferry now that the coronavirus pandemic has closed air traffic.

Although abortion was decriminalized in Northern Ireland last year, it remains unavailable in the British region after the local health ministry missed an April 1 deadline to begin providing terminations.

Continued: https://nationalpost.com/news/world/british-provider-to-post-abortion-pills-to-ensure-n-irish-women-have-access


Northern Irish women told to sail to England for abortions despite pandemic

Northern Irish women told to sail to England for abortions despite pandemic

Amanda Ferguson, Reuters
April 7, 2020

BELFAST — Northern Irish women seeking an abortion have been told they must take an 8-hour ferry to England despite the lockdown, as the regional government resists pressure to offer abortions locally and the coronavirus pandemic stops flights.

Abortion was decriminalized in Northern Ireland last year after the British parliament bypassed opposition from socially conservative Christian politicians in Belfast to bring the region into line with the rest of the United Kingdom, where abortion has been legal for decades.

Continued: https://nationalpost.com/pmn/health-pmn/northern-irish-women-told-to-sail-to-england-for-abortions-despite-pandemic


N. Ireland – Abortion: New laws need full discussion says Arlene Foster

Abortion: New laws need full discussion says Arlene Foster

By Jayne McCormack, BBC News NI Political Reporter
6 April 2020
The Stormont executive will have a "full discussion" about how abortion services should be provided in NI, First Minister Arlene Foster has said.

Major changes to NI's abortion laws came into force at the end of March.

However, the Department of Health has yet to put the regulations into practice.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-politics-52190465


N. Ireland – Coronavirus: Woman can travel to England for abortions, Secretary of State says

Coronavirus: Woman can travel to England for abortions, Secretary of State says
Abortion was decriminalised in Northern Ireland last October following legislation passed by Westminster.

Rebecca Black, Press Association
06 April, 2020

The Secretary of State has suggested it is appropriate for women to travel to England to seek terminations during the coronavirus lockdown.

Strict abortion laws were overturned on March 31 after MPs voted for a change in the law last year.

Decisions have not yet been made by Stormont officials on how to put the new legislation into practice.

Continued: https://www.irishnews.com/coronavirus/2020/04/06/news/coronavirus-woman-can-travel-to-england-for-abortions-secretary-of-state-says-1892763/


Abortion: New laws come into force in Northern Ireland

Abortion: New laws come into force in Northern Ireland
Significant changes to NI's abortion laws have come into force.

Mar 31, 2020

Terminations can be carried out in all circumstances in the first 12 weeks of a pregnancy.

After that abortions are legal in some cases - for example, there is no term limit in cases of fatal fetal abnormalities.

Robin Swann is "urgently reviewing" arrangements to allow women to access free abortion services in England, in light of the Covid-19 crisis.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-politics-52068193


NI women awarded compensation over abortion trip costs

NI women awarded compensation over abortion trip costs

By Staff Reporter
December 20 2019

A mother and daughter from Northern Ireland who were forced to raise funds to travel to a private clinic in England for an abortion are to be compensated by the Government.

Known only as A and B, the two women began legal proceedings seven years ago after they were forced to raise £900 to make the trip for A to have the abortion.

Continued: https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/ni-women-awarded-compensation-over-abortion-trip-costs-38800722.html


Two Northern Ireland women to get abortion costs compensation

Two Northern Ireland women to get abortion costs compensation
European court orders UK government to reimburse mother and daughter forced to travel to England for abortion

Henry McDonald
Thu 19 Dec 2019

A mother and daughter from Northern Ireland who were forced to travel to England for an abortion are to be compensated by the government over their costs.

The European court of human rights has instructed the government to reimburse the women for the cost of travel and the termination at a private English clinic seven years ago.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/19/northern-ireland-women-win-abortion-costs-compensation-case