Tomás Ó Flatharta

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Archive for the ‘February 1992’ Category

Remember Sheila Hodgers

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Remember Sheila Hodgers.

The infamous story of Sheila Hodgers, murdered by Irish Lifers in positions of power – Repeal the 8th.

From Una Dunphy of the Waterford Trades Council :

“Today is the anniversary of her death, thirty five years ago.

Sheila lived in Dundalk with her husband, Brendan. They had two daughters, aged eight and seven. They were considering trying for a third child when Sheila discovered a lump on her breast. After a mastectomy, however, she got better. With the help of cytotoxic drugs, her cancer was kept at bay.

Until, that is, she became pregnant. Her medication was stopped, for fear that it would harm the foetus in her womb. She developed severe lumbar pain, indicating a tumour on her back. But this could not be fully confirmed because the hospital would not take an X-ray.

Brendan Hodgers asked that a Caesarean section be performed on his wife, so that she could return to her cancer treatment immediately. The request was refused. She was admitted to Our Lady of Lourdes in agony. As Brendan Hodgers subsequently recalled: “She was literally screaming at this stage. I could hear her from the front door of the hospital, and she was in a ward on the fourth floor.”

Sheila Hodgers was eventually moved to the maternity ward. On March 16th, 1983, she went into labour two months prematurely and was delivered of a baby girl the next day. The child died almost immediately after birth. Mrs Hodgers died two days later. She had tumours on her neck, spine and legs.”

Six months later the 8th amendment was approved to be added to the constitution. The news had broadcast Sheila’s case just two days before the referendum. Despite that – the referendum passed, and the following month it was written into the constitution.

Since the addition of the 1983 amendment – countless women and families have been negatively impacted by the 8th.

From Miss X [1991], a 14 year old girl that was raped and detained from travelling to the UK for an abortion – to Miss P [2014], a clinically dead woman in her 20s, 15 weeks pregnant, and kept artificially alive for three weeks until the High Courts decided that the woman should be able to have dignity in death.

It is time for Repeal.”

The English Solution to an Irish Problem

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The English Solution to an Irish Problem; Martyn Turner, the Irish Times Cartoonist, Tells it As It Is

Small and Big Steps

Small and Big Steps

“CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICERS in the UK have released statistics this morning on the number of terminations that were carried out in England and Wales last year, highlighting the incidence of women travelling from Ireland to avail of abortion services.

A total of 3,982 women gave addresses in the Republic of Ireland when attending clinics and hospitals during 2012. That made up the 68 per cent of the 5,850 abortions provided to women resident outside both countries. Women from Northern Ireland made up another 15 per cent of the figure.” The new restrictive X Case Law, which the Labour Party and Fine Gael ensured was carried by the Dáil last night, will not change this situation. Pro-Choice TD’s put down several amendments which were rejected; the defeated pro-choice amendments included a provision to allow women with fatal foetal abnormalities access to an abortion in Ireland. Another Savita Halappanavar type case is inevitable, sooner or later. http://www.thejournal.ie/at-least-21-women-from-every-county-in-ireland-had-an-abortion-in-the-uk-last-year-988359-Jul2013/

National Women’s Council of Ireland Director Orla O’Connor makes the current situation clear :

“Over 17,000 men and women wrote 77,428 emails to their TDs and Senators over the last few months to call for legislation to give full effect to the X case as part of NWCI’s campaign. This is evidence of the high level of public support throughout Ireland for access to safe and legal abortion in life threatening cases, including risk of suicide.”

“Yet what people were calling for has not been delivered in this Bill. Abortion remains a crime punishable by up to 14 years in prison and onerous and inaccessible procedures for women dominate the Bill. We urge the Government, as the Bill goes through its final stages, to take on board our proposed amendments so we have legislation that is fair, just and workable for women in Ireland.”

She continued,

“It is also critically important for us to acknowledge that with the passing of this legislation Ireland will continue to have one of the most restrictive abortion regimes globally.  It will provide no solution to women who are pregnant as a result of rape or incest, in the case of fatal foetal abnormalities or where there is a risk to the health of the woman. Women in crisis pregnancies, over 4,000 every year, will still be forced to travel abroad for abortions. Women in Ireland must be in a position to make personal decisions about their own bodies and health care free from coercion, discrimination and the threat of incarceration.  http://www.nwci.ie/news/2013/07/10/vote-on-abortion-legislation-a-historic-moment-for/

Here is Deirdre Conroy’s Account of the shameful Dáil Debate on foetal abnormality :

Minister’s contribution to debate on foetal abnormality was disrespectful to women

87 % are in favour of medical intervention for this condition  http://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/minister-s-contribution-to-debate-on-foetal-abnormality-was-disrespectful-to-women-1.1460755?page=1

Ten Marks Out of Ten : Statement by Six Pro-Choice TD’s Who Will Vote No to the Government’s Pathetically Weak X Case Legislation

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Ten Marks Out of Ten : Statement by Six Pro-Choice TD’s who will vote No to the Government’s Pathetically Weak X Case Legislation

Statement – Abortion Bill – 10 July 2013 – immediate release

See also :

http://www.thejournal.ie/pro-choice-abortion-987669-Jul2013/#comment-1368450

Pro-choice TDs say they have been forced to oppose abortion Bill because it criminalizes women and is unnecessarily restrictive

Bill will not prevent another death like Savita Halappanavar

Restrictions will cause doctors to delay terminations – putting women at risk

Pro-choice TDs this evening declared their intention to vote against the Fine Gael – Labour abortion Bill.

Clare Daly said:

“In the absence of a referendum to repeal Art 40.3.3 of the Constitution – for which we call – we were willing to support legislation in line with the X Case Ruling of 1992. This Bill however, will put more obstacles in the way of access to life-saving abortions than are required by the Constitution.

This legislation is happening in the wake of the sad death of Savita Halappanavar. Yet the Fine Gael – Labour Bill, by defining and giving legal protection to ‘unborn human life’ from the moment of implantation until delivery, will not prevent similar deaths. It will make terminations illegal during an inevitable miscarriage while there is still a foetal heartbeat. If a woman gets an infection in such circumstances, doctors will have to delay a termination until her life is at risk. This was what happened to Savita Halappanavar – and the same could happen again under this Bill.”
Read the rest of this entry »

Action on X Protest; Monday April 29, 6pm, City Hall Plaza, Dame Street Dublin

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Join the Action on X protest on Monday 29th April and tell this government we will never accept their unworkable, dangerous and insulting legislation.

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=454188731336677&set=a.355403847881833.86963.231522283603324&type=1&ref=nf

Alternative Proposals
“the Fine Gael health minister proposes a panel of two obstetricians
and four psychiatrists – one of whom must be a perinatal psychiatrist –
to assess a woman who is seeking an abortion on the grounds of suicide
ideation…there are only three perinatal psychiatrists in the country”
The Sunday Times, April 21st, 2013

Any woman of child bearing hips,
unfortunate enough to find herself
alive on the patch of weeds between Muff
and Kilmuckridge, or Skibbereen
and Hackballs Cross, must,
to have her baby/babies
legally abhorted, obtain, before she kills her
self, without bribery or offer of
sexual favours, the signatures
of six former members
of the Irish National Liberation Army;
six personal friends of Shane Ross;
six random guys shouting
obscenities in the street;
six women from Barna
who thought Michael D’s speech
last week to the European Parliament
was absolutely marvellous;
six Sean Nós dancers in residence
at accredited universities,
six plumbers who’ll definitely be there
first thing Tuesday morning,
six Dutch guys from Doolin
who make their own clogs, or
six ex-members of the pop group
Six.
KEVIN HIGGINS

Written by tomasoflatharta

Apr 22, 2013 at 12:24 am

Action on X – Women’s Lives Matter – Rally for X March 4 2013; Assemble 6pm Central Bank; March to Dublin Castle

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Action on  X Rally 4.3.13

X Case – Anti-abortionists restrictions must be rejected

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Joan Collins TD, Clare Daly TD

Statement – 4 Feb 2013 – immediate release

 

Legislate for X Case

Anti-abortionists restrictions must be rejected

 

The delay of a memo to Cabinet regarding the forthcoming legislation on abortion shows that pressure from the anti-abortion minority must be rejected, said Clare Daly TD and Joan Collins TD.

Joan Collins said:

“The suggestion that the opinions four or five medical practitioners should be required to approve a medical treatment – in this case abortion – to remove a risk to a woman’s life, is an attempt to make abortion inaccessible in practise.

The idea that a despairing woman or girl, driven to consider suicide as a means to escape the trauma of continuing a pregnancy she truly cannot face, would be able or willing to go through four or five medical assessments is a cruel denial of the reality of such a situation. Confronted with such restrictions, any woman who could afford it would travel abroad for an abortion. Poorer women, girls, or those too ill to travel would face obstructions that could drive them over the edge.”

Clare Daly went on:

“A maximum of two medical practitioners, and in an emergency one – should be enough to approve abortion when it is necessary to remove a threat to a woman’s life. And such a threat, as the Chief Justice said in X Case ruling, should not need to be ‘immediate or inevitable’ in order to approve an abortion. The anti-abortion minority must not be allowed continue to impose other restrictions – which could put women’s lives at risk.

Delays in the introduction of legislation for X – which is very restrictive and would only apply in the few instances where lives are threatened – shows the need to repeal Art 40.3.3 from the Constitution to make abortion an issue of medical treatment to be decided by a woman in consultation with her doctor.”

—————————

More on the Government’s Foot-Dragging Here :

What Do We Not Talk About When We Do Not Talk About Abortion?

http://www.claredaly.ie/what-do-we-not-talk-about-when-we-do-not-talk-about-abortion/#more-1333

if it were finally accepted that the old Church-State complex was no longer the dominant force in Ireland, the way would be paved for a very awkward discussion; what should be the dominant ideology in Ireland? How should the state relate to class and gender? Who should hold power and, more importantly, who should have power taken away from them?

And so we get Lucinda Creighton, Enda Kenny, and many other politicians who ordinarily are full supporters of free-choice (as long as it is the limited neo-liberal kind of free choice in the market place) clamouring to strictly control this debate, to not pass legislation for as long as possible, and, whenever they do finally pass legislation, to make sure it is as limited in scope as possible.  This practiced silence and inactivity is a conscious strategy, based on the idea that by not talking about abortion, they might be able to also prevent us all from talking about all these other issues, of power, class and sex.

 

Legislate for X – No restrictions that make abortion inaccessible – Statement by Clare Daly TD and Joan Collins TD

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Clare Daly TD, Joan Collins TD

Statement – 1st February 2013 – immediate release

Legislate for X

No restrictions that make abortion inaccessible

Clare Daly TD and Joan Collins TD today responded to the publication of the Submission to the public hearings of the Committee on Health and Children with regard to the Expert Group Report on abortion:

Clare Daly TD said:

“We welcome the publication of these Submissions. The Minister now has ample evidence from which to proceed. We call for the prompt publication of a draft bill to provide for abortion on grounds of risk to the life of a woman – either by suicide or other reason related to a pregnancy.

We call for the bill to include the statement by the Chief Justice in the X Case Ruling that a risk to the life of a woman arising from pregnancy – be that risk by suicide or otherwise – should not necessarily be ‘immediate or inevitable’ in order for doctors to perform an abortion to remove that risk.”

Joan Collins TD went on:

“We support arguments made in legal Submissions to the Committee that abortion on grounds of fatal foetal abnormality could and should be included in the bill. We also call for trust to be put in the women of Ireland and in their doctors – as was argued in many of the Submissions to the Committee – and for the forthcoming bill not to include restrictions such as to make abortion inaccessible in practise and thereby put women’s lives at risk.”

Clare and Joan both insist that Legislation for X is only the first step. They jointly declared:

“Many of the Submissions illustrate the need for abortion to be made available in Ireland on grounds of risk to health, rape and incest, and fatal foetal abnormality; and when a woman feels that she simply does not wish to proceed with a pregnancy – for whatever reason. We support access to abortion on all of these grounds and will be campaigning for the repeal of the 8th Amendment to the Constitution and the introduction of free, safe, legal abortion in Ireland.”

Web Link :
http://www.claredaly.ie/legislate-for-x/

Legislate for X – Repeal 1861 Act now – Repeal 8th Amendment to Constitution

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An Irish Government finally agrees to legislate for abortion – a very significant victory for women, a practicfal example of the power of mass mobilisation politics – NEVER AGAIN

United Left Alliance Statement :

Legislate for X – Repeal 1861 Act now

Repeal 8th Amendment to Constitution

The ULA welcomes the government’s declaration that legislation for the X Case ruling of the Supreme Court in 1992, despite a delay of twenty years, will finally be brought in next year. There is no need to delay however, in the repeal of Sections 58 and 59 of the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act. This piece of repressive law, retained from the time of British rule, makes abortion a criminal act with severe penalties for women and doctors. We call for the immediate repeal of this legislation. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by tomasoflatharta

Dec 18, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Savita’s Laws

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Large Demonstration Outside Leinster House on Wednesday November 21 –

Legislate for Abortion Now

http://www.savitaslaws.com/1/post/2012/11/never-again-nov-21st-dublin-protest-next-demo-wed-28th-6pm.html

Clare Daly has re-tabled her bill to legalise abortion, which will be debated next
Wednesday.   ULA members distributed literature calling for another demo to coincide with the
legislation debate.

Praveen Halappanavar did an interview on RTÉ tonight calling for legalisation of abortion,
and thanking the over 10,000 people who demonstrated in Dublin last Saturday.

http://www.rte.ie/news/2012/1121/howlin-halappanavar.html#video

This crowd was overwhelmingly made up of people in their 20’s and 30’s, a big majority of
them women.

The government is still in a very deep crisis.

The public arena is transformed: see for example this pro-choice article by Vincent Browne
in the Irish Times :

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2012/1121/1224326896233.html?via=mr

International Day of Action for legal Abortion in Ireland

http://www.facebook.com/events/175080575964011/

Written by tomasoflatharta

Nov 21, 2012 at 11:49 pm

Ireland’s abortion standoff – Al Jazeera Coverage

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Ireland’s abortion standoff

A link to Al Jazeera’s coverage is here :

http://stream.aljazeera.com/story/irelands-abortion-standoff-0022407

Written by tomasoflatharta

Nov 21, 2012 at 12:13 am