Justice minister David Ford motions an abortion proposal consideration for Easter 2014.
The Stormont justice minister David Ford believes a pregnancy termination debate is needed. Ford’s abortion proposal is due for consultation around mid April 2014. His main concern is for mortal fetal abnormalities, rape and incest. Currently the UK 1967 abortion act does not cover the Ulster province. Ford is of the opinion that a consultation process on the need for termination of pregnancy must take place. The abortion consultation process will involves a cross section of society across the province. All the major political parties will have a chance to give their input on any proposals. Religious leaders too will have their say.
A similar abortion proposal demand in Dublin
The Irish government have already been through the grueling process of legalizing abortion in Ireland. The Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill has effectively decriminalized abortion in Ireland. Despite this unprecedented political move, the government omitted to cater for rape, incest, or fetal abnormalities. There has been calls in Ireland to rectify this omission. This means that both Ulster and the Irish state feel the need to address this issue at this time. Any proposal of this kind however, would rely on an abortion referendum in Ireland.
What is the likely outcome for such proposals in both jurisdictions?
It is not a given, but an abortion referendum in Ireland might be a hard sell for the government. The Irish politicians will probably shy away from a referendum call. They will not be keen to revisit the issue in a hurry. In Ulster, the abortion proposal consultation by Ford may have an easier process of delivery. The justice minister has already tapped into similar sentiments among other politicians. Ford has heard heartbreaking stories from women who have suffered the loss of short lived fetal abnormal new borns. Fatal fetal abnormalities are common, and so the desire for abortion proposal consultations in Ulster. For information on abortion, contact Abortion Advice.ie.