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Citizens' Assembly receives over 13,000 submissions about abortion

The assembly may choose to hear oral presentations from any group or individual who made a submission to assist in its deliberations.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny addressing the inaugural meeting of the Citizens' Assembly in Dublin in October.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny addressing the inaugural meeting of the Citizens' Assembly in Dublin in October.
Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

THE CITIZENS’ ASSEMBLY has received more than 13,000 submissions about abortion.

Some 8,000 submissions were made to the assembly online and over 5,000 by post, from mid-October to last Friday, 16 December – the final date for submissions.

The first issue the assembly is due to examine is potentially repealing the Eighth Amendment – the section of the constitution that gives equal status to the unborn and the mother.

Both pro- and anti-amendment groups had encouraged members of the public to submit their views to the assembly for consideration.

All submissions will be published on the assembly’s website in chronological order on a rolling basis. Submissions will be categorised by the individual’s name or the name of the organisation and, in the case of personal stories or sensitive submissions, personal data and related identifiable details have been removed as requested.

The assembly, in accordance with its agreed rules and procedures, may choose to hear oral presentations from any representative group or individual who made a submission to assist in its deliberations.

Chair of the assembly Justice Mary Laffoy said: “We are encouraged by number of submissions we received on the topic of the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution.

I want to thank everyone who made a submission and I appreciate very much their engagement with this process. The submissions the assembly received have an important role in the ongoing development of the work programme and the range of the opinions and insights in the submissions is testament to the complexity of the topic.

“We truly value the effort that everyone has made and we will be reading each one of the submissions in advance of their publication on the website.”

Tweet by @Rónán Duffy Source: Rónán Duffy/Twitter

The assembly is made up of the chairperson and 99 citizens. It is expected to report back in the first half of 2017 on whether or not a referendum on repealing the Eighth Amendment should be held.

The assembly will meet again on 7 and 8 January.

Read: The Citizens’ Assembly will start discussing abortion today. Here’s what’s on the agenda

Read: Day one of Citizens’ Assembly hears people with ‘diverse views’ are ‘destroyed’ on social media

About the author:

Órla Ryan

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