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29th June 2024, 09:00:27 UTC

Abortion is a human right. Most people support abortion rights, but they do not always talk about it. By showing our support for abortion rights, we can destigmatise abortion and make it more difficult for those in power to ignore our demands. You can show your support by reminding Minister Donnelly that the Irish government is obliged to protect everyone’s human right to access healthcare!

This action is part of Amnesty International’s “1,000 Ways to Support Abortion Rights” campaign which demonstrates the many ways to tell the world that abortion rights are human rights.

Ireland has come a long way since the historic Repeal the 8th Amendment but the fight is far from over. Since the 2018 abortion law came into operation, serious gaps and barriers have been identified. Pregnant women are forced to travel overseas to access abortion care and still experience stigmatisation for something that is their human right. This is unacceptable. Ireland should take steps towards full compliance with the 2022 WHO guideline by moving away from restrictive grounds and gestational limits.

What’s the problem?
This is what the Minister’s own review found.

Criminalisation of Healthcare Professionals

The criminalisation of healthcare professionals creates a chilling effect on health providers’ ability to provide care, and can lead to women availing of care being stigmatised.

Preventing harm to women’s health

Some women are denied the care they should be entitled to when there is a risk of serious harm to the health – not just to the life – of the pregnant woman.

Three-day Mandatory Waiting Period

The three-day mandatory waiting period for access to abortion on request is unjustifiable. Nowhere else in healthcare is such a requirement imposed. The 12-week limit for abortion on request is too narrow.

Definition of Fatal Impairment

There is lack of lawful access to abortion in cases of severe but non-fatal foetal impairment diagnoses. The legislation has a narrow and rigid definition of what constitutes a fatal impairment.

Limited Availability of Services

There are serious issues affecting abortion service provision in some geographic regions, with not all maternity hospitals providing abortion services. Providers are overstretched.

Refusal to provide care on conscience grounds

‘Conscientious objection’ is a significant factor in the uneven geographic distribution and number of providers, and is impeding the roll-out and development of healthcare services.

Women deserve better. Sign the petition urging Minister Donnelly to call for the urgent amendment of Ireland’s restrictive abortion law, to fully respect the human rights of pregnant people, and treat abortion care like any other form of healthcare.


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