Saturday, 22nd April 2017
Today, 22nd April 2017, the Irish Family Planning Association (IFPA) welcomed the overwhelming support from the Citizens’ Assembly for reform of Ireland’s abortion laws. In its first round of voting the Citizens’ Assembly voted by 87% to 13% that Article 40.3.3 should not be retained in full.
Responding to the vote, IFPA Chief Executive, Niall Behan said, "After five weekends of deliberation, the Citizens’ Assembly has taken the firm view that Article 40.3.3 is incompatible with the values of Irish society."
However, Mr Behan also expressed concern about the process surrounding subsequent ballots: “Ballots 2 and 3 created significant confusion amongst Assembly members. The Oireachtas Committee must learn from the flaws in this process and take a women-centred approach to the development of reproductive health policy.”
Mr Behan concluded: "Article 40.3.3 institutionalises reproductive coercion and prevents good healthcare. Its replacement with a provision authorising the Oireachtas to legislate to address termination of pregnancy will allow the State to move away from decades of abandonment of women and girls who opt to end unintended pregnancies."