Tuesday 15 October 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'Not quite the political animals we were expecting from Brexit'

British Prime Minister Theresa May. Photo: Getty Images
British Prime Minister Theresa May. Photo: Getty Images
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

On Tuesday night, March 28, 2017, the British prime minister signed Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty to trigger the Brexit process of withdrawing from the EU.That's nearly 660 days ago. 

Since that momentous decision, the British government has achieved little or nothing to move the Brexit process forward. On the contrary, Brexit has proved to be a long and problematic gestation.

Over the same gestation period, any elephant cow impregnated at the same time as Brexit was first triggered would have delivered her calf by now.

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But as the clock ticks down to a breach birth, the Brexit gestation period is more likely to be the same as a chipmunk's - 31 days.

Theresa May must now be hoping that the Brexit process is also more like a chipmunk than an elephant, in more ways than one. It is tempting to speculate that she is hoping that the British people will have the memory of a chipmunk and not of an elephant.

In this, at least, she could very well be right.

Furthermore, Theresa May will also soon discover one of the big differences between the British and the Irish people.

Specifically, in relation to historic problems in Anglo-Irish relations - the British could never remember, and the Irish could never forget.

Unfortunately, Brexit is likely to render this condition an awful lot worse. 

Brendan Dunleavy,


Co Cavan 


IFPA is working tirelessly to meet need for abortion care

Dr Brendan O'Shea's experiences as a GP providing abortion care in the first weeks of the new service are familiar to the Irish Family Planning Association's (IFPA) frontline staff ('How to keep abortion numbers down? Free contraception and better education', Irish Independent, February 20).

It's important we make one correction: the IFPA did not "hold out for extra funding for ultrasound services". We began taking appointments for our abortion care service in the first week of January. Though we do not currently have ultrasound facilities, we hope we will be able to provide scans in future.

But for now our doctors face the same obstacles Dr O'Shea mentions when it comes to ultrasound referrals; indeed, we refer our clients to the same HSE-mandated scanning service as GPs. Our doctors, nurses, receptionists and pregnancy counsellors work tirelessly to meet the need for abortion care. We are responding to calls from women and girls from all parts of Ireland, while maintaining the quality of the IFPA's other sexual and reproductive healthcare services.

We are committed to continuous improvement in our services, including by organising training for our staff which was delivered by experts from the World Health Organisation.

Dr O'Shea rightly highlights the need to prioritise free access to contraception and improvements in sexuality education.

This week marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the IFPA's first clinic.

Niall Behan,

Chief Executive Irish Family Planning Association


Why ruling the roost isn't always child's play at home

Sinéad Moriarty's article ('The mother and father of all debates', Irish Independent, February 21), with reference to 'Parent 1', 'Parent 2' and the possible pecking order involved therein, reminded me of the man who proclaimed, "I'm the boss in our house, and my wife has given me permission to  say so".

Tom Gilsenan,


Dublin 9


Bruton should be clear on timing in the Harris debate

Richard Bruton said that Fianna Fáil has done the right thing in the no-confidence vote against Simon Harris, in the interest of the country.

So is he saying that Mr Harris should actually go as Health Minister, but not now because of Brexit? Is this the way to run a Government?

A Leavy,


Dublin 13

Helpful suggestions on how to get the best out of that €175m

Just imagine what you could do with €175m ...build a storeroom in a children's hospital.

P Moynihan,

Address with editor


I'm very concerned that the winner of the €175m EuroMillions jackpot might not have a Cork background and could encounter difficulty in knowing how to cope with such an amount.

But, being from Cork, I am available to take their windfall issue on board as if it was my own.

Robert Sullivan,


Co Cork

Irish Independent

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