Abortion was made illegal in the Republic of Ireland in 1861, and for a long time, the nation maintained stringent protection for preborn children. However, in May 2018, Irish citizens voted to repeal the 8th amendment, allowing abortion through the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Today, pro-abortion advocates are working to increase access to abortion, while pro-lifers are taking action to stand for life.
When Was Abortion Legalized in Ireland?
Ireland’s Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act was signed into law in 2018 and took effect on January 1, 2019.
What Are Ireland’s Abortion Laws?
The Act allows abortions without restrictions up to 12 weeks of pregnancy. It also allows for abortion in extreme cases, such as when the unborn child is suspected to have a condition that would cause him to die either before or within 28 days of birth.
How Many Abortions Are in Ireland Each Year?
In Ireland, 6,455 preborn children under 12 weeks died from abortion in 2020.
Additionally, UK government statistics show that 194 women from Ireland traveled to England and Wales for an abortion in 2020.
Before abortion was legalized in Ireland, the rate of abortion tourism was much higher. In 1999, for example, nearly 6,000 women from the Republic of Ireland had abortions in Britain.
The Pro-Abortion Response
Pro-choice activists in Ireland are working to increase access to abortion. Their goals include making abortion free of charge and banning conscientious objection. Such a ban would attempt to force doctors to perform abortions, stripping the rights of pro-life medical professionals to honor their knowledge of preborn personhood.
The Pro-Life Response
Meanwhile, Irish pro-life advocates are striving to do even more to support women facing unexpected pregnancies. Pro-lifers are also lobbying for pro-life legislation and promoting thought-provoking conversations about abortion and the sanctity of life.
How You Can Help Save Lives in Ireland
If you’re a pro-life advocate in Ireland, consider getting involved with a local pregnancy resource center. If you live elsewhere, you can still help.
At SOHL Global, we are committed to partnering with pro-life advocates and churches in Ireland and across the globe, equipping them to make a difference in the lives of moms and babies.
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