8th March 2018
The Irish Family Planning Association (IFPA) has welcomed the Cabinet's approval of the wording for the referendum on the Eighth Amendment.
The Irish people will finally be given the chance to undo the damage caused 35 years ago when Article 40.3.3 was added to the Constitution. Since then, at least 170,000 Irish women have been forced to travel to the UK for abortion care.
Welcoming the announcement, IFPA Chief Executive Niall Behan said: "The Eighth Amendment is harmful to pregnant women, it achieves nothing useful and it urgently needs to be removed from the Constitution before more harm is inflicted on pregnant women."
He continued: "It is not good healthcare. It requires doctors, against their medical ethics, to override the wishes of a pregnant woman even when it is clear the pregnancy involves serious or permanent risk to the woman's health. It requires medical professionals to set aside best medical practice.
Mr Behan concluded: "Under the Eighth Amendment, women have been denied care and abandoned by the state. By voting to repeal, we can right a historic wrong and ensure that women are supported to make a personal and private decision and to be cared for by the healthcare system of their own country.”