Media coverage from Labour Women Repeal the 8th Amendment policy publication
Her.ie December 2015
'It will allow abortion on four medically certified grounds: risk to life; risk to health; rape; and fatal foetal abnormality. The test for assessing risk to health will be that of “real and substantial risk”, a test with which doctors are familiar from existing law. A stricter test will apply for risk to health where abortion is sought beyond the first trimester. '
As we approach the Christmas break, here's a short update on the work that I have been doing politically in recent months. As always, you will see more information on all these issues and more in the various sections of the website, on facebook (ivana bacik) and twitter (@ivanabacik).
May I wish you the very best wishes for Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year,
End of term - busy schedule and lots on the agenda!
This time of year is always busy as we wrap up before the Christmas holidays and there is much on the Seanad, Dáil and Committee agenda's. Here are a few issues I raised this week in the Order of Business, 1-3rd December 2015
The House recently concluded a debate on the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Bill, which was very welcome, but in the new year I would like us to have a debate on how best to implement the policy in the Bill and how best to ensure we meet our targets in light of whatever decisions are made in Paris. I know all colleagues will want to join in expressing hope for a positive and effective agreement among the international leaders represented in Paris. I welcome the speech by the US President, Barack Obama, at the Paris summit yesterday, where he pointed out that the Paris conference is a potential turning point for us in respect of curbing global warming. We are at a critical point to try to ensure we do not see it take hold, with the dire consequences we all know will occur. I concur with Senator Ó Murchú's comments on Ireland's role in this. Clearly, it will be difficult for us to seek to meet the 20% reduction by 2020, particularly because of our agricultural emissions, but we have a duty to ensure that we try to meet these targets.
I welcome the Northern Ireland High Court decision yesterday, by Judge Mark Horner, in a case taken by the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission. The judge found a breach of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights in respect of the failure to provide for abortion in cases of fatal foetal abnormality and rape. Clearly, there are implications for this jurisdiction, but the Leader has agreed already to a debate on that in the new year.
So pleased to finally see this amendment to the Employment Equality Act finally passed and justice prevailed for LGBT workers in the Education and Health Care field. Congratulations to all who worked so hard and for so long to add to what has been a great year for equality measures!
I first introduced the amendment of Section 37.1 back in March 2013 and I'm thrilled to see its completion. #Equality
HEADS AND GENERAL SCHEME OF REPEAL THE EIGHTH AMENDMENT BILL 2015
A Framework for the Scheme of the Bill which would be introduced by the Labour Party into the Oireachtas if Article 40.3.3 (the Eighth Amendment) of the Constitution were repealed by way of Referendum. This Bill would provide for the conditions under which terminations of pregnancy may be carried out legally in Ireland.
Follow link or go directly to 'General News' release see full Bill details.
With Labour Party colleagues ahead of the Employment Equality Amendment Bill (Section 37.1) being introduced to the Dáil.
L-R Ivana Bacik, Dominic Hannigan TD, Sen. Marie Moloney, Aodhan O'Riordhain TD, Sen. Mary Moran, Ciara Conway TD, and Derek Nolan, TD.
Very pleased to see that the Employment Equality (Amendment) (No.2) Bill I first introduced in 2013 to the Seanad was at last introduced to the Dáil for discussion this week. I look forward to it being passed quickly and efficiently. #Equality #LGBT #INTO
With just five weeks for the legislative programme up to Christmas I'm keen to see a number of urgent Bills passed and issues debated in both Houses #GettingDownToBusiness
Senator Ivana Bacik, Order of Business, Thursday 12th November 2015.
'Yesterday, the justice committee had a two and a half hour meeting with the Garda Commissioner, Ms Nóirín O'Sullivan, in the course of which she answered a huge number of questions on an array of issues around policing. They covered a wide range of pressing matters, including gangland crime, drugs policy, firearms and so forth. There is a great deal of material from that meeting which we could explore further in a debate in this House on policing. In addition, when will the policing authority Bill finally be passed? It is an urgent Bill.
With regard to legislation, when is the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Bill due back before the House? It passed Second Stage in the Seanad and there are only five weeks for the legislative programme up to Christmas. I am hopeful, as are other colleagues, that the Bill could be passed by this House by Christmas at the latest, so it can progress through the Dáil in advance of the general election. It is a very important and reforming Bill which, among other things, reforms the law on prostitution. It is important that it is passed. In addition, the Equality (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill, which was initiated in the Seanad and seeks to amend section 37 to prevent discrimination against gay and lesbian people in the teaching profession, is another Bill that I hope will be passed by the Dáil by Christmas. It has been passed by this House...
It was an honour to be invited back to my alma mater, Alexandra College and to be on such a fine panel of past pupils with Miriam O’Callaghan – RTE broadcaster; Niamh Briggs – Captain of the Irish female rugby team; Hon. Ms. Justice Isobel Kennedy. – High Court Judge; Moya Doherty – Entrepreneur and the producer and co-founder of Riverdance.
Sen. Ivana Bacik calls for debate on victims of crime - Order of Business, Seanad Éireann.
Wednesday, 21 October 2015
'I ask the Leader to arrange a debate on victims of crime. Is there a projected date for the introduction in the House of the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Bill? This morning the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality dealt with the pre-legislative scrutiny of the Bill. During the course of the debate powerful submissions were made by eight NGOs who work with victims of crime. They included the Victims' Rights Alliance, the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, the Rape Crisis Network Ireland, the Irish Penal Reform Trust, IPRT, and other groups. In the course of their submissions the NGOs reminded us that this Bill is important because for the first time it provides a statutory framework for the protection of victims' rights in the criminal justice system. It is also a Bill that will implement an EU directive that must be transposed in Ireland by 16 November. The legislation has reached the heads of a Bill stage. The committee is hastening through its pre-legislative scrutiny of the legislation. I wonder can we get it into the Seanad without any undue delay. During the submissions we also heard from Safe Ireland, which released its data on domestic violence this morning which contained some frightening figures. As Safe Ireland pointed out to us, the appalling tragedy where Garda Tony Golden was murdered highlights the serious issue of domestic violence and domestic abuse.'