Ireland is one of the few last Western European countries to prohibit abortion, with Andorra, Northern Ireland, Liechtenstein, Malta, and Poland. According to the Eighth Amendment (Article 40.3.3) of the Irish Constitution which was enacted on 1983, “the State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.”
Amnesty International is an association fighting for reproductive rights, ending torture and protecting migrant & refugee rights, among others. The association is financed by its members and contributors, and claim to be independent of “any political ideology, economic interest or religion”. The main goal of the association is fighting against fundamental rights deprivation.
Amnesty International has launched a program fighting for abortion laws regulation, by asking the Irish to repeal the 8th Amendment. The action is named “Repeal the 8th” or “She Is Not A Criminal “. The association states that it’s “wrong for the Government to use the criminal law to control women’s reproduction”. These women should get the absolute freedom to make their own decisions. Beyond repealing the 8th Amendment. According to Amnesty International, 80% of the Irish public would vote Yes in Referendum to repeal the 8th Amendment.
— Amnesty Ireland (@AmnestyIreland) February 13, 2017
Amnesty International aim to introduce reproductive health centers where women can be helped by “legal and medical framework”. Abortion centers have to be easily accessible and also provide care by professionals.
This is important considering that in some states in the USA, have legalized abortion but also use the state power to diminish the power of Planned Parenthood (notably, a regulation that prevents a smooth functioning of these organizations, by making abortion less accessible).
Amnesty International joined the March for Choice, where women gathered in Dublin to demonstrate in outside Government buildings in order to put pressure on legislators. March for Choice was held in September 2016 for its 5th edition.
- Women and girls are not criminals – Amnesty joins March for Choice (September the 24th, 2016).
- Amnesty welcomes Sinn Féin Policy change on abortion. Amnesty International found a strong political ally of the left-wing movement Sinn Féin. The political party notably took a stand to repeal the 8th Amendment of the Constitution. Political support is precious for the organization, in order, to increase awareness among Irish citizen regarding this crucial issue of women rights to get an abortion (at least, in life-or-death situations).