Here's Everything You Need To Know About What Went Down At The Citizens' Assembly

Here's Everything You Need To Know About What Went Down At The Citizens' Assembly

Last Saturday, the controversial Citizens' Assembly met to discuss the issue of the restriction of abortion, amongst other issues, before submitting a report to legislators.

Here are some of the main points gathered from the meeting.

1. Members were urged to go silent on social media

The Assembly's Chairperson, Ms Justice Mary Laffoy, has urged members "not to engage in their normal civil liberty" of discussing the proceedings on social media, believing that it would be 'inappropriate' while the process in on-going.

She also warned organisations about contacting members.

2. It's a 'sensitive issue'

Judge Laffoy stated that issue of abortion is a sensitive one, and that an open mind will be the significant feature when discussing the matter.


3. But some people made the point that the restrictions were somewhat overbearing

4. Enda Kenny was there – and had plenty to say


Taoiseach Enda Kenny commented that the issues being discussed in the up-coming months, 'are deeply complex, hugely challenging and profoundly ethical'.

He also requested that the public allow the Assembly members, 'the necessary space and respect to go about their work'.

5. And plenty of people were calling it out for being something of a cop-out

Or a delay tactic.

6. Which is a bit understandable, given how overdue this action is...

Over the past year in particular, thousands of women have taken to the streets to demonstrate their right to bodily autonomy. Around nine Irish women go abroad every day for an abortion – that's 3,000 women a year who are unable to access safe medical procedures in their own country.

Activist groups such as the HunReal Issues and Pro-Choice Campaign Ireland, have actively campaigned for this constitutional right – and only now is there a step being taken.

The assembly will engage in further discussions over the coming weeks and will hold their next meeting on October 25 in Malahide, Dublin.

For all pro-choice campaigners, the hope is that the assembly will vote to enact legislation to repeal the amendment and decriminalise abortion in Ireland.

Ciara Finnegan

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