Abortion Referendum: Pro-Choice Campaigners Lead Calls for Savita's Law

The News Letter (Belfast, Northern Ireland), May 27, 2018 | Go to article overview

Abortion Referendum: Pro-Choice Campaigners Lead Calls for Savita's Law


Pro-choice campaigners have backed calls for Ireland's new abortion laws to be named after a tragic expectant mother who died after being refused a termination.

The Together for Yes coalition said the gesture would recognise the "great debt" the Irish people owed to Savita Halappanavar, the 31-year-old Indian dentist who died in a Galway hospital after doctors refused to perform an abortion as she miscarried.

They supported a call from Mrs Halappanvar's father Andanappa Yalagi for the abortion reforms to be named Savita's Law as they urged the government to expedite legislation in the wake of the landslide referendum vote to end the state's near blanket ban.

Together for Yes said the government should reconsider its proposed end of year schedule for passing the legislation and called for a special summer sitting of the Dail and Seanad to ensure new laws were brought in as soon as possible.

Mrs Halappanvar's death in 2012 has become emblematic for advocates of abortion reform in Ireland.

As people continued to lay flowers and messages at an impromptu shrine to her in south Dublin yesterday, Together for Yes co-director Grainne Griffin said the coalition would support new legislation being called Savita's Law.

"In terms of Savita and her family I think our country owes them a great debt and we were so honoured and so touched by the support that they lent to the campaign over the course of it," she said. …

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