A fake website has been set up to mimic the H.S.E website that provides information for people seeking abortion services. 

Repeal campaigner Tanya Cody called the helpline number on the fake website to find out what information was being given to callers.

“I told him I was looking for info on where I could get an abortion in my area and he said that looking for information on abortion is still illegal as Simon Harris has not abolished the family planning act 1979. He then said I need to get a solicitor immediately as I’m breaking the law by calling him. He was extremely rude through out the call.”

The man she spoke to repeatedly asked her for her name and queried how far along her pregnancy was.

Tanya explained:

“I asked him was I through to the right number and he kept avoiding the question.”

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On the third day of limited abortion services being available, anti-choice campaigners stood outside a health clinic in Galway protesting abortion services. The same thing happened in Louth a few days later.

Senior Law Lecturer at the University of Birmingham, Máiréad Enright, said that these efforts to hinder abortion access could have been avoided.

“The Minister recognises the need for exclusion zones, and must know that other jurisdictions have successfully legislated on this issue.”

Máiréad and her colleagues at Lawyers For Choice published a position paper in July 2018 noting the key flaws in the draft legislation that Minister Simon Harris put forward.

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Day 3, January 2019 and the ‘pro-life’ groups are already outside clinics intimidating & harassing women.

Máiréad says they were concerned about the legislation when it was first published,

“We assumed that it was draft legislation only, and the Minister would be open to changes once the legislation was actually debated in the Oireachtas.

“Although we did not expect that the basic grounds (twelve weeks, risk to life, risk of serious harm to health and FFA) would be open to change, we did think that some of the secondary provisions which do not comply with international human rights law or medical best practice e.g. the three day mandatory waiting period would be open to re-negotiation.”

Lawyers For Choice members researched best practice legislation elsewhere in the world and the group drafted model legislation, “which complies with best medical practice and reflects the highest standards imposed by international human rights law.”

“We hoped that the overwhelming mandate provided by the Yes vote would strengthen arguments for more accessible legislation. Simon Harris, however, argued that the Yes vote in May was effectively a vote for the draft legislation published in March and so no significant pro-choice amendments to the legislation could be accepted.”

Lawyers For Choice proposed legislation that included fines or imprisonment for anyone publishing, distributing, displaying or broadcasting material, “likely to mislead or deceive a person who is accessing or attempting to access an abortion.”

Their proposed legislation also included 100-metre safe zones, with fines or imprisonment for anyone engaging in intimidation, threatening or recording of people attempting to access premises where abortions are provided.

There are other key areas where Lawyers For Choice say they believe the legislation could cause future problems,

“The mandatory waiting period should be scrapped or, it should be possible to waive it in cases where observing the waiting period would block the woman from accessing abortion care.”

“Abortion should be completely decriminalised, or failing that, any offences should be very narrow and targeted at practices which harm women. Although doctors have a clear defence where they are acting in good faith, criminalisation leaves them vulnerable to ‘stings’ and threats.”

Máiréad says that this “chilling effect” is already inhibiting access to abortion, with the Rotunda recently announcing that they will only provide abortions between nine and eleven weeks, rather than between nine and twelve weeks as permitted by law.

“Criminalisation is also likely having an effect on the number of GPs willing to offer terminations so that some counties have very limited or no abortion services at the current time.”

During the campaign to repeal the 8th amendment women with wanted pregnancies spoke to the media about how the 8th impacted on their capacity to refuse consent while pregnant.

Now that the 8th has been removed, Máiréad says attention needs to be paid to the wider impact of removing the 8th Amendment from the Constitution.

The law lecturer cites the National Consent Policy, “which restricts pregnant people’s right to refuse medical treatment where doing so is perceived to place the foetus’ life at risk”, saying it, “has not yet been altered to clarify the scope of a woman’s right to bodily autonomy in pregnancy.”

According to Máiréad, the current law leaves too many people behind.

“It makes no provision for women who receive a diagnosis of severe foetal anomaly, or who need to terminate a pregnancy after 12 weeks for serious socio-economic reasons.”

“The combination of a strict 12-week deadline, a mandatory three-day waiting period and scarcity of service providers outside the major cities will inevitably mean that some women are refused care and will need to travel or terminate pregnancies illegally.”

Source: https://www.her.ie/news/law-lecturer-says-that-new-abortion-legislation-leaves-too-many-women-behind-444015?fbclid=IwAR1IsVSjyCQAtBm245ISt2HFGbrGS1lvi7eXh7y-PStl6ZgSgOlKA-kgJak