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Huge Majority Of Citizens' Assembly Back Abortion Rights

By Alana Laverty

April 23, 2017 at 3:57pm

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A majority of members of the Citizens' Assembly have voted in favour of permitting abortion in Ireland under a wide range of circumstances at its final meeting today. 

A vast majority of the 92 members of the assembly voted to allow abortion in all 13 circumstances (such as physical risk to the life of a woman, pregnancy as a result of rape and significant foetal abnormalities). 

The lowest level of support today was for there to be no restrictions on abortion. 

The assembly’s recommendations will be presented to the Oireachtas and, if accepted, would mean the holding of a referendum to overturn the existing Constitutional provision banning abortion.

The Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment say:

"The Assembly members have recommended this matter be put fairly and squarely in the hands of the legislators – where it should always have been. 

Our politicians know it is their duty, as members of the Oireachtas, to make laws.  When circumstances and public opinion are clearly demonstrating an urgent need for new legislation, they cannot shirk their responsibility.  

The Government cynically established the Citizens’ Assembly to avoid making difficult decisions themselves.  Through their hard work and dedication, the Assembly members concluded what the Government should have known all along: that is the role of the legislature to legislate.

This puts it up to our politicians now.  There’s nothing left for them to hide behind; they need to get on with addressing this issue once and for all."

Ailbhe Smyth, Convenor of the Coalition

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