On 25 May 2018 Irish men and women voted to remove the provision in the Irish Constitution that protected the right to life of the unborn. This marks a massive milestone in Irish history for women’s rights and a step away from the heavy presence and influence of the Catholic Church. The vote was a landslide victory, something unexpected for many, and a very happy day for women’s rights activists. This victory is a wonderful beginning to a new era in Irish history that will see women’s rights prosper and respected by the Irish government.
22 years ago the last Magdalene Launder closed, marking an end to the systematic abuse of women in Church care. Child abuse scandals have rattled the Irish public in Catholic schools and shaken the faith of many. This referendum shows a movement by the Irish people to a more progressive society. One that shows compassion in a crisis and love to women, who have historically been oppressed. Despite the victory, the Catholic Church still remains adamant that yes-voters are sinners and have even recommended we got o confession and confess our sins. To that, we must say that the Catholic Church must take a step back and look to a more equal Ireland. Women have been oppressed and underrepresented for too long. If the church fails to follow the hearts and minds of the Irish people then they will be left further behind.
I am so proud to be Irish. This referendum shows a compassionate society, eager for change and welcoming the rights of women to their health, bodily integrity and privacy. This marks a great day in Irish history and all that is left to be said is a massive thank you to the 1.4 million people who voted yes and to every single person who campaigned for Together for Yes!
Photo: Together For Yes