The 8th: Ireland, the abortion referendum. You can feel the tectonic plates shifting

TV: This highly watchable film chronicles the Repeal side’s winning campaign of 2018

Wed, Aug 4, 2021
Ed Power

The historic significance of the vote to repeal the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution, in the referendum of 2018, was lost on nobody at the time. Three years later, The 8th (RTÉ One, Wednesday, 9.35pm) captures the sense that tectonic plates were shifting under Irish society as the electorate went to the polls to allow abortion in Ireland.

The 8th, which comes to television after a video-on-demand run earlier this year, is told largely from the perspective of the Repeal campaign, particularly that of the veteran women’s-rights advocate Ailbhe Smyth. The point she and other campaigners make over and over is that, although the vote was of course about restoring to women their bodily autonomy, the wider context was the State’s beginning a long journey of atonement for decades of institutionalised misogyny.


Ireland – Independent expert to review abortion law, says Minister

Appointment to take three-strand approach – service users, providers and public consultation

Tue, Jul 6, 2021
Marie O'Halloran

An independent expert will be appointed to
lead the review of abortion legislation that has been in operation since
January 2019, Minister of State for Health Anne Rabbitte has confirmed.

She said in the Seanad that the review will have three strands focusing on
women who have used the service, service provides and a public consultation.


Ireland – Details of abortion legislation review needed, Donnelly told

Senators raise concern that just one in 10 GPs provide abortion care

Tue, May 25, 2021

Marie O'Halloran

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has been urged to outline arrangements for
the review of abortion legislation, on the third anniversary of the referendum
to repeal the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution.

The Termination of Pregnancy Act provides for a review of the legislation three
years after its implementation and Fianna Fáil Senator Mary Fitzpatrick said
the legislation has worked for many women but it “has not been perfect”.


Ireland – Only one in 10 GPs in State provide abortion services, study shows

Coverage a barrier to accessing services in rural and marginalised areas, study finds

May 24, 2021
Sarah Burns

Only one in 10 GPs in the State provide abortion services, according to a paper published by the National Women’s Council.

While GPs providing early medical abortions are “very committed”, coverage remains a significant barrier to accessing services in rural areas and in marginalised communities, it states.


Women’s Rights Are Human Rights

This fight against women's oppression is not just a struggle for women, but for all of humanity.

Tuesday, April 06, 2021

by Alison Bodine, Common Dreams

March 8, 2021, International Women’s Day, is an important day to recognize the
challenges confronted and the great victories made by women around the world,
especially in the past year of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Over the last 12 months, in addition to the health challenges posed by Covid-19
itself, women have faced increasing rates of domestic violence, higher rates of
job loss, as well as a larger burden of the care of children and families
because of the pandemic. In countries like the U.S. and Canada, government
mismanagement of Covid-19 has amplified the health and economic crisis. Black,
Indigenous, and immigrant women and their communities have been
disproportionately impacted by the crisis.

Ireland – ‘This institution for ‘unmarried mothers’ is not part of some distant past – it closed in 2006’

Writer Caelainn Hogan has accessed files that give an insight into life at a Donegal mother-and-baby home known as The Castle.

Aug 23, 2020
Caelainn Hogan

IN A SMALL town in Donegal close to the border with Derry there is an abandoned building that was once a mother-and-baby home called the Castle.

The boarded-up house is visible from the road, set back from high gates in an overgrown field.

This institution where ‘unmarried mothers’ were sent is not part of some distant past. It only closed in 2006.


Abortion: the US shows what could be in store for Ireland

A close look at what is going on in the US could show what is in store for Ireland

Fri, Jul 24, 2020
Mary Ziegler

The fight over Ireland’s Eighth Amendment touched a nerve in the United States. After all, more than four decades ago, Americans lived through a sweeping change to the nation’s abortion laws after the US Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision invalidated most laws on the books and created a new right to choose abortion.

In May 2018, Ireland experienced a change that was just as explosive. Voters decisively chose to reject the Eighth and approve a law that guaranteed unrestricted access to abortion until the 12th week of pregnancy.


Malta looks to Ireland in campaign for legal abortion

Malta looks to Ireland in campaign for legal abortion

Monday, 25 May 2020
By Ailbhe Conneely, Social Affairs & Religion Correspondent

The second anniversary of the referendum on the 8th amendment has arrived, and has barely made a dent in the news coverage due to Covid-19.

Arguably, the appetite for the story is no longer there, but it is a topic that will never be far from the headlines.

Legislation underpinning the current service will be reviewed next year, for example.


Ireland – Abortion: Minister warns of exclusion zones after hospital protests

Abortion: Minister warns of exclusion zones after hospital protests
Maternity hospital street protests ‘sickening’ and ‘anti-democratic’, says Simon Harris

Jan 2, 2019
Paul Cullen Health Editor

Local authorities could be given powers to impose exclusion zones outside maternity hospitals preventing anti-abortion protests, Minister for Health Simon Harris has suggested.

Another option Mr Harris said he was examining was to engage with the Minister for Justice in relation to legislation governing intimidation and harassment.


Ireland – Coombe hospital obstetrician appointed HSE clinical lead for abortion

Coombe hospital obstetrician appointed HSE clinical lead for abortion
Services are available in 10 out of 19 maternity units, and through 347 GPs in the community

Dec 30, 2019
Paul Cullen Health Editor

Dr Aoife Mullally, an obstetrician at the Coombe hospital in Dublin, has been appointed HSE clinical lead for abortion, a year after the service was introduced.

Dr Mullally’s main task in the part-time post will be to ensure the roll out of termination of pregnancy in more maternity units, and in GP surgeries and other community settings.