Wednesday 21 November 2018

Final Results

Repeal the Eighth Amendment?

Yes 66.40% 1,429,981

No 33.60% 723,632

  • Constituencies declared: 40/40

Referendum Hub


Graphic pro-life posters displayed near primary school branded 'disgusting'

Almost 30 complaints have made about advertising material related to the upcoming referendum - Independent.ie can reveal

Scoil Chaoimhin
Scoil Chaoimhin

Kathy Armstrong and Laura Larkin

Graphic pro-life posters calling abortion "child sacrifice" which were erected near a primary school have been branded "disgusting".

Several large posters were erected at the Marlborough Luas stop in Dublin city centre last week and showed graphic images of foetuses.

The posters included text such as "Abortion is child sacrifice" and verses from the Bible.

They were put up just less than a kilometre from city school Scoil Chaoimhin by pro-life group the Irish Centre For Bio-Ethical Reform (ICBR). The group displayed similar signs across the city, including on a van which was driven around the capital.

Dublin City Councillor Eilis Ryan, who supports the repeal of the Eighth Amendment, said that she feels that the posters on Marlborough Street are insensitive.

The Workers' Party representative told Independent.ie: "They're disgusting, to be honest I think they are probably the worst that I have ever seen.

Pro life marchers pass Pro Choice protestors on O'Connell Street (Stock Image)
Pro life marchers pass Pro Choice protestors on O'Connell Street (Stock Image)

"I think it's ironic that the name of the group is the Irish Centre For Bio-Ethical Reform because there is absolutely nothing ethical about showing images like that to passers-by.

"When I was around seven years old I remember seeing similar signs on a street in Cork and I distinctly remember how upset I was.

"For a young child to see those images is just really irresponsible for people who claim to care about children.

"Another thing that is noteworthy is the religious imagery, we are consistently being told that [this debate] isn't about religion.

"It misleads people into believing that abortion is something that it's not," Cllr Ryan continued, questioning the age of the foetuses shown in the posters.

"I think it's important that these posters are monitored in terms of their accuracy."

The ICBR defended their campaign material to Independent.ie and said they think their message is important.

Eilis-Ryan.jpg
Councillor Eilis Ryan called the posters 'disgusting'

"It is essential for us to reach the public with the reality of what abortion represents and those whom it victimises," Dr Jean Engela, ICBR Director, said.

"Abortion advocates are left mostly unchallenged while hiding the truth and tragedy of abortion on both the pre-born child and the mother."

Scoil Chaoimhin did not comment on the posters.

Meanwhile, Independent.ie can reveal that almost 30 complaints have made about advertising material related to the upcoming referendum on the Eighth Amendment.

While a date has not yet been set for the referendum - which is expected to take place in late May - already a number of billboards and posters have been erected around the country.

The Advertising Standards Authority has confirmed that a total of 29 complaints have been received to date, on materials related to the upcoming referendum.

Dublin City Councillor Ciaran Cuffe - a member of the Green Party which supports repeal - submitted a complaint to the ASAI about a billboard on Parnell Street by the pro-life group Savethe8th.

In his complaint, Mr Cuffe took issue with the use of the term 'babies' and 'killed' which he believes were used in place of 'foetus' and 'termination'.

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Ciarán Cuffe Picture: Doug O'Connor

The Save the 8th campaign, responded to the complaint branding it "utterly shameful" and offered to publicly debate the councillor on the issues raised.

A spokesman for the ASAI said it has not "in a position to comment on individual complaints received. The ASAI can confirm it received the complaint in question this morning and will now assess it in line with normal ASAI procedures".

The authority does not have any role in regulating marketing communications which are related to political or social issues.

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