Abortion services in Ireland will officially be legalised from January 2019 after passing all stages of the Oireachtas.
Yesterday was described as a historic day after the Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy Bill was passed by the Seanad.
Last night’s vote clears the way for the law to be introduced in January 2019 after the bill is signed by President Michael D Higgins.
Senators passed the bill by 27 votes to 5, with almost 50 amendments in total put forward for the final report stage. The amendments were rejected by Health Minister Simon Harris.
The new law will allow for abortion up to 12 weeks, or after that time if there is a fatal foetal abnormality or danger to the woman’s health.
“The law, at last, is changing. We will have a service. It will be legal. It will be safe. It will be free,” said Minister Harris.
Ireland voted decisively to change the Constitution to repeal the Eighth Amendment in May, with 66.4% voting in favour of new legislation to allow for the termination of pregnancies.
Donegal was the only constituency to return a No vote, rejecting a repeal of the Eighth Amendment by 52% No to 48% Yes.
Just over 200 days ago, you, the people of Ireland voted to repeal the 8th so we could care for women with compassion. Today we have passed the law to make this a reality. A vote to end lonely journeys, end the stigma and support women’s choices in our own country
— Simon Harris TD (@SimonHarrisTD) December 13, 2018