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Petition set up to 'formally compliment' Sydney Rose for abortion comments

It’s in response to RTÉ receiving a number of complaints about Brianna Parkins’ remarks.

Image: RTÉ.ie

MORE THAN 1,300 people have signed a petition complimenting Brianna Parkins for the comments she made about abortion during the Rose of Tralee.

During Monday night’s live broadcast on RTÉ One, the Sydney Rose told host Dáithí Ó Sé: “I think we can do better here in Ireland. I think it is time to give women a say on their own reproductive rights.

“I would love to see a referendum on the Eighth [Amendment] coming up soon. That would be my dream.”

An open letter offering people’s “formal compliments” to Parkins about her remarks reads:

To whom it may concern,

In response to the small number of formal complaints RTÉ has received in relation to the Sydney Rose’s comments on Monday night’s (August 22nd) Rose of Tralee, we the undersigned would like to offer our formal compliments to Ms Parkins and welcome her voicing the need to repeal the 8th Amendment in Ireland. Noting that RTÉ does not appear to have a mechanism for offering formal messages of support, we ask that these signatures be assessed in the same manner as any complaints received.

Yours,

The Undersigned

As of this afternoon, RTÉ had received 16 complaints about the comments.

A spokesperson said: “As this formal process in underway, RTÉ will not be making any comment.”

Mary Kennedy, chair of the judging panel of the Rose of Tralee, told the Irish Independent the festival was not the place for Parkins to air her views on abortion as it’s not a “political platform”.

Parkins told DailyEdge yesterday she found it a “little confusing” that some Roses had been asked their opinion on abortion in private and that that process had been judged, only for her then to hear that her public interview was not the place to air her views on the subject.

I do find it disappointing that for a festival that has been out there for years trying to dispel this ‘lovely girl competition’ image and saying that it does empower women and it’s good for women and then to turn around and actually say you can’t have opinions on women’s issues and women’s rights and an opinion over the control of your own body.

Rose of Tralee chief executive Anthony O’Gara later told the Independent he was “delighted” Parkins had spoken out, saying it’s fair for contestant to express their opinions.

Read: Sydney Rose is ‘disappointed’ and ‘confused’ after festival chair Mary Kennedy condemned abortion comments

Read: ‘No discussion, edits or changes’ were made to the Sydney Rose’s abortion comments on the RTÉ Player

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Órla Ryan

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