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Abortion Bill to be introduced to the Dáil tomorrow

TDs Clare Daly, Mick Wallace and Joan Collins say that the Bill addresses the 1992 X case ruling.

TDs Joan Collins and Mick Wallace at a press conference in December.
TDs Joan Collins and Mick Wallace at a press conference in December.
Image: Julien Behal/PA Wire

A BILL IS SCHEDULED to be introduced to the Dáil tomorrow which would legislate for limited access to abortion in Ireland following the X case ruling 20 years ago.

Successive governments have failed to legislate on the 1992 Supreme Court ruling, which found that women have the right to abortion in Ireland if their life is in danger, including from suicide.

The Medical Treatment (Termination of Pregnancy in Case of Risk to Life of Pregnant Woman) Bill 2012 is set to be introduced to the Dáil by TDs Clare Daly, Mick Wallace and Joan Collins.

In a joint statement, the TDs said that the Bill aims to legislation for allowing abortion in circumstances where the life or health of the mother is at risk.

“This government has no bother paying the bankers billions or putting thousands of public sector workers on the dole queues,” Collins said this evening. “But for some reason it is unable to allow a pregnant woman whose life is at risk to have an abortion in her own country.”

“Labour and Fine Gael need to wake up and face the fact that this is a basic human right and we don’t need another expert committee to waste more time and money coming to the same conclusion.”

Wallace said that the European Court of Human Rights ruling in 2010 stressed that the lack of legislation on this issue adversely affected women without the means to seek medical services outside the state. “Our present government boasts that we are good at doing what we are told by European authorities…but we seem to have a problem with taking direction from the European Court of Human Rights,” he said.

Meanwhile, Daly said that economic constraints and increased austerity measures would see women without the resources to travel abroad for a termination “inevitably resort to backstreet abortions”.

The Bill is scheduled to be introduced to the Dáil tomorrow, and debated on April 18 and 19.

Read: Government urged to legislate for X case, 20 years after court decision >

Twenty years on: a timeline of the X case >

In pictures: The 20th anniversary of X Case protests >

POLL: Should it be legal to have an abortion in Ireland? >

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