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On Safe Abortion Day, NWC calls for abortion to be available to everyone who needs it

Published: Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Press Release for 28 September

28 September is International Safe Abortion Day and the National Women’s Council has reiterated our call for abortion to be available to everyone who needs it across Ireland.

Earlier this year, an independent review into abortion services – which was mandated by the 2018 referendum to repeal the 8th amendment and chaired by Marie O’Shea BL – recommended widespread improvements in services. These included recommendations to increase access to abortion care in all communities across the country;  to make the three-day wait optional, to decriminalise abortion, and to remove arbitrary restrictions on care in cases of fatal foetal anomaly.

NWC’s Head of Development and Policy, Kate Mitchell, said:

“While it’s positive that the Oireachtas Health Committee will examine the O’Shea report on 18 October, women need to see changes now. The postcode lottery for services must end; the paternalistic waiting period and the arbitrary 12-week limit must go; and medics must not face the threat of criminal charges if they provide abortion.”

Poushali Kundu, NWC’s Women’s Health Officer, said:

“At least 860 women have travelled to the UK for abortion since the repeal of the 8th amendment. That is 860 women who did not receive the care they needed at home, many of them in incredibly difficult circumstances. We know that it is marginalised women – women in Direct Provision, migrant women, Traveller and Roma women, disabled women, and  victims of sexual violence – that are most impacted by the restrictions. Government can and must take immediate steps to support women who need abortion care.”

NWC also calls for the full implementation of abortion services in Northern Ireland.  


For more information, please contact Sinéad Nolan, NWC Communications and Social Media Coordinator, on sineadn@nwci.ie


About NWC

The National Women’s Council is the leading national representative organisation for women and women’s groups in Ireland, founded in 1973. We have over 190 member groups and a large and growing community of individual supporters.

This year we celebrate 50 years since our foundation with a special calendar of events and campaigns.

The ambition of the National Women’s Council is an Ireland where every woman enjoys true equality and no woman is left behind. This ambition shapes and informs our work, and, with our living values, how we work.

We are a movement-building organisation rooted in our membership, working on the whole island of Ireland. We are also part of the international movement to protect and advance women’s and girls’ rights. Our purpose is to lead action for the achievement of women’s and girls’ equality through mobilising, influencing, and building solidarity. Find out more on www.nwci.ie