PBP TD welcomes the Citizens Assembly’s clear call for the extension of the right to abortion to women who need it
Press Release- Bríd Smith TD, People Before Profit
People Before Profit TD, Brid Smith, welcomed the Citizens Assembly’s clear call for the extension of the right to abortion to women who need it.
87% of the Citizens Assembly voted against retaining the 8th Amendment as it currently exists. It also expressed clearly the view that socio-economic reasons were grounds for terminations up to the 22nd week of pregnancy.
The demand to widen the reasons for abortion – beyond risk to life and health, rape and fatal fetal abnormality – shows how much opinion on these issues have changed.
The 91 citizens managed to bring women’s situations and choices centre-stage and get the proposed restrictive cases significantly widened.
“The call at the Assembly for womens’ socio-economic situations to be considered as grounds for abortion legislation is a strong indication of the mood for change” she said.
She also said that their views showed that the government had to stop delaying and move to a referendum to repeal the 8th Amendment.
“The logic of what the citizens’ assembly have said about abortion rights for women is that there should be no replacement clause in the constitution and that the 8th Amendment should simply be repealed” she said.
The assembly also proposed a replacement constitutional amendment which would provide for the Oireachtas to legislate ‘to address termination of pregnancy, any rights of the unborn and any rights of pregnant women’.
It was her belief that this clause which put the rights of the ‘unborn’ – a term from Catholic teaching – on a par with ‘rights of the pregnant woman’ ran counter to the recommendations given by the citizens that terminations should be allowed without restriction up to the 12th week of pregnancy.
According to Brid Smith, “Irish women want to be treated as they are in other countries, as a people able to make their own decisions if they become pregnant. It is time to get the Church out of our lives and separate church from state.
“In a week that has already seen the Catholic Church pandered to over the proposed maternity hospital at St Vincent’s, no concessions to the Catholic Church should be made. The growing pro-choice movement should keep up the pressure on the government to hold a referendum for repeal as quickly as possible” she said.
People Before Profit will be proposing this when the Citizens’ Assembly recommendations come to the Special Oireachtas Committee.
Contact- Bríd Smith- 087 909 0166
Nick Lee- 087 615 6473