Abortion legislation: ‘very important for women of Ireland’, says Labour’s Bacik

Seanad leader confirms ample time available for members to speak on Bill at all stages

Ivana Bacik:  welcomed legislation “on this important issue”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Ivana Bacik: welcomed legislation “on this important issue”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Thu, May 2, 2013, 06:00


Labour Senator Ivana Bacik said she hoped the abortion legislation would become law before the summer recess.

“That is very important for the women of Ireland and I am really glad we are finally legislating on this important issue,” she said.

Labhrás Ó Murchú (FF) said he could not share the welcome for the legislation. “I do not believe it is good for society and it is certainly not good for the innocent baby whose life will be ended and who will not be given the opportunity to realise his or her full potential,” he said.

Paul Coghlan (FG) said abortion was a complex issue and people needed to stay calm. “We must be conscious of the fact that abortion is prohibited in Ireland and no change is envisaged in that regard.”

He said there was concern about the suicide issue and that was why the House should wait until the conclusion of the Oireachtas committee’s consideration of the legislation.

Mr Coghlan said it was necessary to have legal clarity for medical practitioners on where medically necessary terminations were permissible.

Martin Conway (FG) said the publication of the heads of the Bill meant people need not now speak in a vacuum but had something on which to go.

House leader Maurice Cummins (FG) said there would be ample time for any member of the Seanad who wished to speak on the Bill at all stages.