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Questions from the Citizens’ Assembly

By December 2, 2016News

We spent a lot of time last weekend at the IFPA watching and discussing the Citizens’ Assembly. The discussions raised some important questions. Here, we hope we can add to the conversation by sharing some of our short video clips about abortion, the law and the experiences of women and their partners.

 

Women’s experiences

During the proceedings of the Citizens’ Assembly last weekend, there were requests to hear from women who have had abortions.  We agree that this is critical to an informed, nuanced discussion of the Eighth Amendment. You can hear some women’s stories in our video: Women Have Abortions Every Day. It’s only two minutes long and is the most-watched clip on our website.

Viewing time: 2 minutes.

 

Men’s experiences

Some members of the Citizens’ Assembly asked to hear from men about their experiences in relation to abortion. IFPA pregnancy counselling services are there to support men too. Our third film choice is Men Engage  – this video highlights the ways that men can support their partners through an unplanned or unwanted pregnancy, or a pregnancy that has become a crisis in a woman’s life. The key message, as Evelyn Geraghty, IFPA Director of Counselling, makes clear in this short film is, “While a woman’s decision is never made in complete isolation, the decision, nonetheless, ultimately lies with her.”

Viewing time: 3½  minutes.

 

The impact of the law

Back in 2012, before the introduction of the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act the IFPA produced this video. The most shocking thing about this film is that although legislation was introduced in 2014, because the new law only allowed for abortion in case of risk to life, almost nothing has changed since then. According to the stats produced by the UK Department of Health, in 2015, the year for which the most recent figures are available, 3,451 women and girls in Ireland, or just over nine a day, travelled to the UK to access abortion services. And increasingly, women are risking prosecution and accessing the abortion pill online.

Viewing time: 2½  minutes.

 

Emergency Contraception

A question also arose during the Citizens’ Assembly about emergency contraception and whether it is prohibited by the Eighth Amendment. Here’s our animation about emergency contraception. It explains how it works, why it has nothing to do with abortion, and also why “morning after pill” is a misnomer. 

Viewing time: 4 minutes.