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This New Document Should Answer All Your Eighth Amendment Questions

By Jen

April 24, 2018 at 12:06pm

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An independent booklet outlining the two sides of the upcoming referendum on the Eighth Amendment has been published online before being delivered to homes across the country.

The Referendum Commission say their information posted online and in the booklet will be about "giving the facts".

The Commission will also be running an in-depth advertising campaign across various media and outdoor sites in the coming weeks.

The booklet gives a history of the Eighth Amendment (Article 40.3.3) since it was written into the constitution in 1983.

The situation as it stands

Currently, the only legal termination of pregnancy “is lawful only where it poses a real and substantial risk to the life of the mother, including a risk of suicide”.

If the upcoming referendum is not passed, this rule will remain and laws can be passed once they do not conflict with this, according to the Referendum Commission.

The booklet outlines that the upcoming vote is proposing to replace Article 40.3.3 (8th Amendment), with a new article:

Provision may be made by law for the regulation of termination of pregnancy.

The booklet goes on to explain: “If a majority votes Yes, this will allow the Oireachtas to pass laws regulating the termination of pregnancy. These laws need not limit the availability of termination to circumstances where there is a real and substantial risk to the life of the mother".

If the Eighth Amendment is repealed

The Referendum Commission’s remit deals exclusively with the referendum 'yes' or 'no' vote so the booklet does not have info on the proposals for the regulation of abortion if the amendment is repealed.

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