Ireland's historic abortion referendum: What it means for the people

Ireland to Hold Abortion Referendum

Irish Students Offered Grants to Fly Home and Vote 'Yes' to Abortion

Forty percent of Irish people support unrestricted abortion until 12 weeks in pregnancy, but 33 percent think allowing unrestricted abortion until this pregnancy date goes too far, according to a Sunday Independent/Kantar Millward Brown opinion poll.

Voting rights for Irish emigrants are restricted to those who have left the country within the past 18 months and there is no postal or online vote.

Voters head to the polls to decide whether to repeal a constitutional ban on all abortions except in cases where the mother's life is at risk.

I'm voting "yes" so that doctors don't feel like their hands are tied when they're treating the pregnant women of Ireland.

Yes vote supporters at a Diaspora Downunder Dollars for Choice event in Melbourne.

Since then, tens of thousands of Irish women have traveled to various parts of the United Kingdom, such as London and Liverpool, as well as Europe to obtain abortions. In 2012, I was busy trying to settle into life in an unfamiliar English town as a university fresher - dealing with the unexpected hurdles of moving away, like clapping back at students making fun of my accent. That is, if I don't suffocate first on the irony of appealing to paternalistic masculine bullshit that positions women as helpless in order to maintain the structure of paternalistic masculine bullshit that (sometimes) positions women as dead. For advocates of repeal, a "yes" vote would be a landmark in Irish women's fight for equality and the right to control their own bodies.

Pro-life campaigners argue the eighth amendment is necessary to protect the "vulnerable minority" of unborn children. In fact countries with liberal abortion laws usually have lower rates of abortion. At the time, her husband said he thought an abortion might save her life. Cases after 12 weeks would have to be approved by two doctors. Based on the experience of similar legislation in England, this change would result in the deaths of thousands of unborn babies every year, most of whom would be perfectly healthy. This isn't the provision of healthcare. "It has taken 35 years, 10 governments and a massive public campaign to get us here, and in that time Ireland's draconian abortion laws have caused enormous misery and even cost lives", said Colm O' Gorman.

A woman casts her vote in Ireland's referendum on liberalizing abortion law, on Gola Island, Ireland, May 24, 2018.

How do laws in Australia compare?

"We all need to recognise and respect each other's religious beliefs but it's important to separate out church and state - otherwise you're living under a theocracyrather than a democracy".

Abortion was already illegal in Ireland under the Offences against the Person Act of 1861.

Una Mullally, an author and abortion-rights campaigner, says she sat down one day with her parents and asked them how they voted in 1983.

What will happen if the Eighth is repealed? Should a yes vote prevail on the 25th May, it will enable the government to legislate for allowing access to abortion.

The blatant misogyny that steams from these ads is precisely the reason why Ireland must vote yes to repeal the 8th amendment.

So devoted to the rights of the fetus are proponents of the 8th that there have been numerous stories of women dying because doctors refused to assist in the termination of pregnancies that were posing a quantifiable risk to the mother's life.

The majority of #HomeToVote tweets have come from "yes" voters, but advocates for the "no" side have also used it to spread their message.

The Amendment establishes one of the most basic principles of our society and guarantees the right to life of all human beings, regardless of individual circumstance.

The Human Rights Committee's views are supported by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, the UN Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights, and the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.

With polling stations to close at 10pm on Friday local time and counting to begin on Saturday, it's likely the result will start to become clear this weekend.

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