Referendum result must be respected by legislators

26 May 2018

Repeal the Eight Members of the Congress Executive Council and staff supporting a Yes Vote in the forthcoming referendum on the repeal of the 8th Amendment

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions notes the projected outcome of the referendum in the exit polls. The removal of the 8th amendment now seems inevitable and we welcome that outcome.

In welcoming the outcome Patricia King, ICTU General Secretary said, “Congress opposed the insertion of the 8th amendment in our constitution in 1983 and we have been consistent in our belief that ­­reproductive health should not be determined by the provisions of the Constitution. Over the years our fears were justified as women suffered as a direct consequence of the amendment. In welcoming the result we must remember all those forced to silently seek treatment away from family and friends over the decades, in secret and in fear. The removal of the 8th amendment comes too late for Savita and the other unknown victims of a failed law. Our elected representatives now need to respect the outcome of the referendum and give priority to the enactment of legislation. We also need a stronger commitment to child care and adequate financing of women’s health. The 8th amendment has served to divide Irish society for 35 years. With compassion and concern the Irish people have now spoken. Congress will continue to campaign for the improvement of services to women, for investment in mental health services and sex education as well as improving conditions for women at work.”