Jamie-Lee O'Donnell, who plays Michelle in Derry Girls, has had to defend her pro-choice position after being accused of being paid to be pro-choice.
The actress, who was a vocal supporter of the movement to repeal the Eighth Amendment and is advocating for the introduction of similar abortion legislation that is to be introduced in the South, in Northern Ireland, had to tweet to clarify that she has not been paid to promote pro-choice beliefs by pro-choice charities:
Just to be clear, I am not, nor have I ever been paid by any charities to promote the pro choice movement... I do it because its right! #TheNorthIsNext
— Jamie-Lee O'Donnell (@JamieLeeOD) October 31, 2018
A Northern Irish pro-life group, known as Precious Life, accused O'Donnell of being "paid" in a post published on their website. The post took aim at O'Donnell's performance in ‘I Told My Mum I Was Going On An RE Trip', which explores the issue of abortion. The post, called 'Real Derry Girls are Pro-Life', suggested that celebrities are encouraging the public to buy into a pro-choice stance:
O’Donnell is being paid to advocate for the killing of millions of Irish babies. She is yet another so-called “celebrity” to buy into the pro-abortion propaganda.
Nicola Caughlan, Jamie-Lee's co-star, defended the actress on Twitter against the statements made by Precious Life. Sharing the websites post on Twitter, Nicola noted that the post was libelous and defamatory and could result in "legal action" being taken.
Claiming @JamieLeeOD is being paid by Pro Choice charities is an outright lie, as you well know.
— Nicola Coughlan (@nicolacoughlan) October 31, 2018
Currently, Northern Ireland is under pressure from human rights organisations and the European Union to allow women to access reproductive healthcare. You can access more information on the movement under the hashtags #thenorthisnext and #NowforNI