The law is the first to legalise abortion on demand in Ireland, but it is far from perfect. Here we outline some of the key issues that our TDs and senators are expected to address when the bill is considered in 3 years. Our full submission to the government on the Health Act can be found here. In one case in 2010, the Irish government denied Siobhán Whelan an abortion despite being diagnosed with fatal fetal syndrome. She had to travel from Ireland to the UK to terminate her pregnancy. In June 2017, the UN Human Rights Committee ruled that Ireland`s abortion law violated Whelan`s human rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, subjected Whelan to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and called for legalization and access to safe abortions.   The verdict was welcomed by the Center for Reproductive Rights.  In 1988, a case against a group of clinics that offered abortion counselling made it illegal for anyone to counsel or support a woman who wanted to travel abroad for an abortion. Some women circumvented these restrictions by travelling to the UK on «shopping trips», while others died without the means or ability to travel because they were forced to carry a foetus. With the entry into force of the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act, the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Act was repealed in 2013. Articles 7 and 8 of the 2013 law provide for legal abortion where there is a risk of loss of life due to physical illness, while Article 9 provides for legal termination of pregnancy in cases where there is a risk of loss of life by suicide. Sections 58 and 59 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 were repealed and effectively replaced by the offence of intentional destruction of unborn human life as defined in section 22, punishable by imprisonment for fourteen years. The girl`s case sparked widespread protests both for and against abortion rights, but in the end, de Londras said: «This was perhaps the first time society as a whole understood the extent of the restriction that the Eighth Amendment actually created in Irish law.» As a result of this case, referendums in 1992 concluded that Irish citizens could not be prevented from travelling abroad for legal abortion or from inquiring about abortion services in other countries.
There are signs that hiring in the United States. However, they are already changing. Tresa Undem, a pollster who co-founded the nonpartisan polling firm PerryUndem, said that since abortions were banned after six weeks in Texas, more Texans are aware of anti-abortion laws; Moreover, Undem told me, men and independent women voters were talking and thinking more about the issue than before. «For the first time since I`ve been doing research, I`ve heard that they`re really taking this issue very personally and changing their behavior.» This represents a remarkable transformation in Ireland, where a few years ago life-saving abortion was the only way to reduce it. As recently as 2010, at least 12 women left Ireland every day to have abortions in English clinics. It was probably not the only time someone had suffered or even died because they had been denied an abortion in Ireland. But the publicity surrounding the case sparked a new wave of activism to repeal the Eighth Amendment. In 2013, the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act was signed, which did not completely repeal the Eighth Amendment, but legalized abortions that would protect the mother`s life.
Even before 1983, people living in Ireland who wanted legal abortion went to England on the so-called «abortion route,» as abortion was also criminalized in Northern Ireland. In the wake of the Eighth Amendment, a 1986 Irish court ruling declared that even abortion counselling was banned. Women diagnosed with fatal fetal abnormalities can now legally obtain an early termination of pregnancy at the hospital where they are treated. The case led to attempts to pass three other amendments to the Irish constitution. One of them, who declared that suicidal intentions were not grounds for abortion, failed. The other two insisted on allowing Irish people to travel for abortions and on allowing information about legal abortion to be disseminated in other countries. Before Justice Samuel Alito`s majority bill was leaked to Dobbs v. Jackson Women`s Health Organization in May, most Americans didn`t think Roe v. Wade would probably be overthrown. The nearly 50-year-old precedent that established the constitutional right to abortion had created a kind of complacency in the status quo that meant that most Americans, Democrats and Republicans, did not believe that Roe was seriously in danger of no longer being the law of the land.
Politicians feared an increase in criminal abortions and infanticide in 1929 after the passage of the Criminal Law Amendment Act, which banned all contraceptive devices and substances; No exceptions were made.  More than 100 Irish women died each year in the 1930s from unsafe backyard abortions.  The achievements of Ireland`s new law are clear: it provides for free, safe and legal abortion for most people who need it. It allows abortion on demand for up to 12 weeks and beyond 12 weeks in very limited circumstances. This is a service run by a family doctor with additional services in sexual and reproductive health clinics. Abortion is now offered by more than 300 primary care doctors and 10 of the country`s 19 maternity hospitals. A 14-year-old suicidal rape victim is initially prevented by the courts from travelling to England to terminate her pregnancy. This is a controversy known as Case X. In addition, it has simply become easier for women to have a self-administered abortion at home.