We must end unregulated abortions in Ireland and ensure access to compassionate healthcare
Published: Monday, February 05, 2018
The National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) today highlighted that a protected period of 12 weeks where a woman can access abortion if she needs to in consultation with her doctor will ensure that unregulated abortions will become regulated and safe in line with best medical practice. The protected period of 12 weeks will be the only workable option to provide abortion care to women who have become pregnant as a result of rape.
Orla O’Connor, Director of NWCI said,
“The proposal by the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Eighth Amendment to introduce a protected period of 12 weeks where a woman who needs to end her pregnancy can access abortion care in consultation with her doctor is informed by the lived reality of women in Ireland as well as best medical practice. It means that we end unregulated abortions in Ireland today, where women order abortion pills online or travel abroad for abortions without the necessary medical follow up. And it ensures that we introduce a regulated and safe system, where women and girls have access to the whole range of healthcare options that they need.”
Orla O’Connor continued,
“The protected period of 12 weeks will be the only compassionate way to provide for women who have become pregnant as a result of rape who will be able to end the pregnancy in a way that protects their safety and dignity. As one of the leading organisations working on the issue of violence against women for decades we know that it would be utterly unethical and unworkable to introduce access to abortion on the grounds of rape and to expect a woman to disclose the fact that she has been raped.”
Orla O’Connor concluded,
“In reality the proposal for a protected period of 12 weeks allows a minimum six week window in which a woman could be expected to know that she is pregnant, to consider her personal and family circumstances and to enable her to decide to end or continue her pregnancy. It is the minimum for a considerate and compassionate process where pregnancy can end as early as possible and at the same time ensure that no woman's decision is rushed.”
NWCI has developed the Every Woman Healthcare Model – Accessible, affordable healthcare options for all women and girls. More information is available on www.everywoman.nwci.ie
For more information, please contact Silke Paasche, Head of Communications, Tel. 085 858 9104.