A guide to abortion services and information for people in Ireland.

This post is inspired by and adapted from a post originally published  at Feminism and Tea, also on the topic of abortion services. However: this is me saying all of it, and I take full responsibility for that.

Picture of a coathanger and the number "8th", crossed out in red.

Abortion is illegal in almost all circumstances in Ireland. In this post is information on the legal situation in the Republic, and how you can get the services you need. I’ll be sharing information on both legal and illegal methods of accessing safe abortions. If you need to use the latter, be careful! I’ll advise you on precautions that you can take to make sure everything goes smoothly and you get what you need. Continue reading “A guide to abortion services and information for people in Ireland.”

A guide to abortion services and information for people in Ireland.
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Dublin’s 2015 March for Choice: in pictures.

Sometimes I feel like Ireland’s reputation is unfairly overshadowed by our history. Conservative, grey, under the thumb of the church. And yes, there is a truth to that. But there is also a truth to this. Yesterday’s 2015 March for Choice was huge. The sun shone. Women took to the stage and shared their stories.

 

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The history of pro-choice in Ireland has often been difficult. I remember a few short years ago: countless winter vigils for our dead. Standing huddled in the cold and the dark. We wouldn’t stop until Savita had something resembling justice. Seem times it feels like we’re always responding. Yet another tragedy. Yet another woman dead. Or locked up until her pregnancy is done. We’re always on the defensive. Continue reading “Dublin’s 2015 March for Choice: in pictures.”

Dublin’s 2015 March for Choice: in pictures.

The X Case: Let’s get legislation.

Are you Irish or living in Ireland? Are you sick to death of successive governments refusing to legislate for the two-decades-old X Case? I am.

TW for abortion, rape, child abuse and Irish politics. Here we go.

In case you’re not from here or have been living under a rock since the early 1990s, the X Case happened twenty years ago, and involved a 14-year-old child who needed to access an abortion. Here’s Cork Feminista on it:

20 years ago a 14 year old girl, known as X, grabbed the attention of Ireland when she had to go to England to try to get an abortion after being raped and impregnated by a family friend. Her case lead to the first frank public discussion about abortion and the sexual and reproductive rights of women. Both the government and the Supreme Court had to take a stance one the subject and society was also actively involved in the matter through a referendum.

It looked like Ireland was finally recognizing the need for abortion regulation. Irish people voted to carry the referendum but still the Republic had some of the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe. The government had the responsibility to legislate for the decision; however after almost 20 years no government had been determined enough to approve the regulation that was required. Today, Irish people still don’t know exactly what this kind of abortion means in real terms.

Yeaaaaah. Kid gets raped and pregnant. Is suicidal. Needs an abortion. Has to go to the frickin Supreme Court to be allowed out of the country to get one. This led to a referendum. The Irish people voted in favour of allowing women abortions when their lives are at risk. A few years later, we (because I was old enough to vote at this time) voted in favour of considering suicide one of those risks.

And for twenty years, the government has sat back and done nothing.

Of course, women in Ireland haven’t been sitting back and doing nothing. Women in Ireland have been travelling to the UK in their thousands for needed abortions. For decades. And y’know something? It’s about time we did something about it. Last month’s March for Choice was amazing. But a march is just one day and it’s easy for legislators to ignore. And in the meantime, even women whose health is endangered, whose fetuses are dying inside them, and who are only children themselves are forced to travel overseas every single goddamn day for the medical care they need. As for immigrant women living here without visas to travel out of the country? They don’t get to have abortions. Even if their health is at risk. Even if they’re deathly ill. Even is their fetuses are dying. Even if they’ve been raped, even if they’re suicidal, even if they are children.

This is not okay.

Here’s what you’ve got to do.

It’ll take you a minute, max. Click on this link. Follow the instructions and an email’ll be sent out to your TDs calling for action on X. Then share it. Share it with everyone. That’s all you’ve got to do.

Do it.

Now.

The X Case: Let’s get legislation.

Marching for Choice in Dublin

Marching for Choice in Dublin, my latest post on Feminist Ire, is a writeup of yesterday’s pro-choice march.

We were genuinely and collectively in awe at our numbers, here on O’Connell street. For the first time in my life, I felt that we might get somewhere with this. That we might really have some power to change things. Living in Ireland, it’s hard to truly explain what a truly big deal this is. How much of a revelation.

The Irish state needs to face up to its responsibility for the many thousands of women who have travelled overseas for abortions. It has a long-standing habit of brushing inconvenient women under the carpet- years ago to be incarcerated in Magdalene laundries, now on Ryanair flights to Britain. At yesterday’s march we came together to say that we are no longer going to accept this. We’re sick of being silenced and of our choices villified and shamed. We’re not going to accept being caricatured as heartless murderers anymore. We care deeply for the rights and well-being of all of us, for everyone in this country’s right to self-determination. And we’re not going to be quiet anymore.

For more, and for tons of pics from the march, head over to Feminist Ire!

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