Friday 17 November 2017

Labour TD Anne Ferris: I could wallpaper a room with the amount of abortion hate mail I've gotten

Anne Ferris TD
Anne Ferris TD

Niall O'Connor Political Correspondent

A LABOUR Party TD says she could "wallpaper" one of the rooms of her home with hate mail she has received as a result of her views on abortion.

Wicklow deputy Anne Ferris told her party's conference in Mullingar that she has also received anonymous abusive phone calls.

Ms Ferris, who has championed the campaign to repeal the Eighth Amendment, said individuals who have targeted her "are not Christians". She received several rounds of applause from delegates after expressing her upset over the experiences of women who find themselves in cases of fatal foetal abnormality.

"I believe that women have a right to choose. I believe that women, especially in crisis pregnancies, don't need anybody - don't need the church, don't need men, don't need other political parties dictating to them," Ms Ferris said.

"We have taken stories of women that we have listened to, and their husbands and partners, who had to go England. Women suffering with fatal foetal abnormalities. Women who are pregnant as a result of rape and incest. They are trapped in this country and the only resource they have if they want to terminate their pregnancy is to go to England. We don't have the places here to look after women and that is an absolutely disgrace," she added.

And Ms Ferris hit out at individuals who have sent her hate mail, which she described as "absolutely disgusting".

 "I get it by email, I get it by letter, I get anonymous phone calls. These people who say they are Catholics and what I'm saying is disgraceful. They are not christian people."

Ms Ferris previously lost the party whip after voting in favour of a bill on fatal foetal abnormalities, tabled by left wing TD Clare Daly.

Speaking during the same debate, Clare TD Michael McNamara criticised the decision by the party to strip Ms Ferris of the whip.

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