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The Government has declared its intention to legislate for abortion on demand up to twelve weeks’ gestation if the Eighth Amendment is withdrawn from the Constitution by referendum to be held in early summer.
There has been no effort to explain the rationale behind the limit of twelve weeks and it is already becoming clear that, should the Eighth Amendment be removed from the Constitution, subsequent legislation for any limits or conditions will be extremely difficult due to the widely differing views of Dáil members. What would emerge from Dáil Éireann without the brake of the Eighth Amendment cannot be predicted and is, for now, mere conjecture.
Neither can it be presumed that the right to conscientious objection, currently being challenged in other jurisdictions, will be respected.
Doctors for Life Ireland maintains its opposition to the removal of the Eighth Amendment and would like to encourage all doctors and health-care professionals in their commitment to caring for unborn children and their mothers. It is vitally important to make our views known, with clarity and compassion, to patients, colleagues, family members and political representatives.