Sunday 4 December 2016

Women treated as 'vessels' says FG councillor

Published 10/07/2015 | 02:30

Councillor Kate O’Connell
Councillor Kate O’Connell

A prominent Fine Gael councillor claims Irish women are being treated as "mere vessels for the incubation of foetuses".

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Councillor Kate O'Connell, who is a running for the party in Dublin Bay South, said repealing the Eighth Amendment was an "absolute necessity" for the health and wellbeing of women.

In a hard-hitting speech to Dublin City Council, Ms O'Connell said society benefits when "women only have the children they want, are able to rear and rear well".

"The ability to control if and when we become parents determines how we participate in society.

"Therefore I believe the right to free, safe and legal terminations are fundamental to Irish women's equality," Ms O'Connell said.

"The estimate that 12 women travel every day for terminations to the UK and further afield - we cannot continue to turn a blind eye when thousands of women have made that journey since 1983, when this amendment was added to our nation's Constitution."

She added: "Repealing the Eighth Amendment is not just necessary because people will get terminations anyway, but because women's desire to seek the life they want, in the same way men can, is their right.

"We need to stop treating women as mere vessels for the incubation of foetuses, but instead as self-governing autonomous equals in society."

Ms O'Connell will go head-to-head in Dublin Bay South with former European Affairs minister Lucinda Creighton, who was stripped of the Fine Gael whip after voting against the Government over the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill.

Ms O'Connell and Ms Creighton were born just three weeks apart and Ms Creighton celebrates her 34th birthday tomorrow.

Ms Creighton is now the leader of Renua Ireland.

Irish Independent

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