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.