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22 March 2018

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Sinn Féin supports civil society coalition to Repeal 8th Amendment

“We’re people who trust women, who believe that women’s health and lives have to be protected, people who believe that the 8th amendment serves as a danger to women and stops doctors doing their job.” – Mary Lou McDonald TD

Sinn Féin has very clearly tendered its support for the civil society coalition ‘Together4Yes’ that seeks to repeal the 8th amendment from the Irish constitution. Together4Yesdescribes itself as the national civil society campaign to remove the Eighth Amendment from the constitution, campaigning for a more compassionate Ireland that allows abortion care for women who need it.

Launching its campaign today in the Pillar room of the Rotunda, hundreds attended from a wide variety of backgrounds including political parties, NGOs, Trade Unions and charity organisations.

MC-ing the campaign launch today was Tyrone-born novelist Martina Devlin, alongside each co-director of the Together4Yes executive.

The executive of the Together4Yesis made up of Alison O’Connor of the National Women’s Council of Ireland, Gráinne Griffin, founding member of the Abortion Rights Campaign, and Ailbhe Smyth, former head of women’s studies in UCD.

Speaking to An Phoblacht today, Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald said that it’s the dynamic and broad background of Together4Yes that will be needed to repeal the 8th amendment, and that Sinn Féin fully support the campaign.

“I’m very happy to be here, the Together4Yes group is very dynamic and that’s what’s going to be needed to repeal the 8th amendment. We’re people who trust women, who believe that women’s health and lives have to be protected, people who believe that the 8th amendment serves as a danger to women and stops doctors doing their job”, the Sinn Féin leader said.

The comments from the Dublin Central TD come less than a week after news emerged that the Sinn Féin Ard Comhairle will bring forward a motion to the next party Ard Fheis seeking to put the party’s policy on abortion closer in line with the recommendations of the Oireachtas committee on the 8th amendment.

At a press conference last Monday, Deputy McDonald said that “this is a very important referendum and Sinn Féin will campaign passionately for the removal of the 8th amendment. We can no longer stand by and allow women’s lives, health and wellbeing to be damaged.  It is time to act.”

The Ard Fheis will take place in Belfast on the 15th/16th of June, with a location to be confirmed.

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