independent

Friday 31 October 2014

No to Daly abortion bill

JOHN MANNING

Published 04/12/2012 | 11:30

IT IS time for less talk and more action on legislating on abortion in Ireland, according to a local TD who had a bill to legislate for the X Case voted down last week in the Dáil.

Deputy Clare Daly TD (ULA), pictured right, told the Dáil: ' The problem is there has been a huge amount of talk rather than action. It is regrettable the Government will not allow this Bill pass second stage. On this, as well as several other issues, this house is out of touch with people in society.' Talking about the reaction to the tragic death of Savita Halappanavar, Deputy Daly told the Dáil: ' We have had an outpouring of emotion with ordinary citizens demanding we take action as they are sick of us talking about it. 'I received one email from a woman who described herself as a mother, a daughter, a woman who has been through a life-threatening pregnancy that resulted in abortion. 'She told me she protested for the first time since she was in college as she never felt so moved to stand up and be counted in her life. 'She has just had her second child, a beautiful baby girl, and this is not what she wants for her or her country, for which she is usually proud.' Deputy Daly added: 'Irish people have evidently moved on with regard to this issue. What this discussion really shows is that the campaign to repeal the eight amendment to the Constitution starts here tonight.' Saying she wished she had been able to go further in her Bill but was restricted by the Constitution, Deputy Daly said: 'I am embarrassed our bill could only legislate for the X case. It gave us the start to do that, however. ' The Minister for Justice and Equality, Deputy Shatter, correctly last night said that even if this legislation is passed or the Government comes up with legislation in six months' time, we will still have one of the most restrictive abortion regimes in the world. 'We will still not be dealing with the thousands of women who every year have to leave this country for an abortion. We will not be providing for those who become impregnated because of rape or incest or for women with fatal foetal abnormalities. The Minister for Justice and Equality described this as an indefensible cruelty.' She went on to criticise the same minister, saying: 'However, the minister in his reply to this bill, put his hands up in the air stating this is a not a matter for government. If it is not, then for whom is it a matter? ' The minister with responsibility for equality said women are not equal as they have a limited right to health and bodily integrity. That is not enough in a modern civilised society.' Deputy Daly concluded: 'We know our bill tonight is only the first step but it is a necessary one to deal with this long overdue issue. We are not bringing abortion into Ireland. Irish abortion already exists for thousands of women every year. 'What we are asking for is an end to the hypocrisy and to allow people treat this private and personal matter as one of personal choice between them and their doctors. 'We, along with all the people who have been in contact with us over the past several weeks, will not rest until the house starts to deal with these issues. 'I am not withdrawing the bill. We want to press it, not as a panacea but as a signal to our citizens and future generations, as well as to the eyes of the world looking in on us, that we are at last beginning with some seriousness to address this long overdue issue.'

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