Women in America, We Cannot Forget Irish Women in Need of Abortion… Solidarity

Worldwide, women are being tortured because of denial of medical services; medical services that have been in practice for thousands of years (more on that in a soon to come post).

Before I go on to the main reason of this post, which is, women in Ireland, I have to say, if I respect England for nothing else, I really respect them for how the NHS handles abortion. I know there is a lot of drama about the NHS, but this is one aspect I think they have completely correct.

I am in England a lot but being that I’m American I don’t have personal experience with the NHS, obviously. However, I have spoken to other women who have and their experience seems so much more simple than that of ours in America, and especially in Ireland.

One amazing sign that things are a lot different in England is you can type in to google’s search engine:”NHS Abortion” and the results come back with intelligent and non-biased medical options such as HERE and HERE.

It seems the NHS does something other places find hard for some reason… That is, they respond to a medical need (abortion) with informative medical information, options and FAQs…as it should be.

If only it were that way for women all over the world.

Instead, other women are faced with concerns such as how to pay IF they are in an area that does provide abortions. But now if you are in certain areas of America or in Ireland, you have to figure out your way to the abortion clinic, how to pay, where to stay, etc… And let us not forget the religious tantrums thrown in the faces of women in both countries in response to a MEDICAL need because they want the woman to feel like she is a bad person; when in fact, she is NOT.

Women in America know this all too well as we fight to maintain the right to our own body and mind; as we fight to maintain the right to make a medical choice. This right has been one we’ve had to fight for off and on since 1900 (depending on state). The right to make our own choice is a right that has forever been ours, but made illegal off and on in different states until we finally gained the right to legal abortion in Roe V Wade. Now, in 2013, we are fighting to keep that right.

But then there is Ireland. In Ireland abortion has been tragically illegal for women since 1861, when the Offences Against the Person Act  of 1861 was put into place.

To this day, these women are still fighting for the right to have the option to make the choice and make it legally, to have access to medical care and to not be controlled by religious zealots.

I will paste the article I am speaking of below… Please click the link at the end to see how you can help the women of Ireland, or, if you are a woman in Ireland, to see how you can access help. Article begins:

Women from Ireland having abortions in Britain face “enormous additional burdens” compared to British women, the chief executive of the British Pregnancy Advice Service, said yesterday.

The service is a registered charity and the largest abortion services provider in Britain.

Ann Furedi said she could not comment on the specifics of the case reported in yesterday’s Irish Times.

The Irish Times takes no responsibility for the content or availability of other websites.

“The Irish women we see are absolutely the same as the British women we see, apart from the fact the Irish women have these enormous additional burdens,” she said.

“They have travel, transport, accommodation costs and the additional stress of having to travel to a different legal jurisdiction to get the care that they need at a time when they are feeling, frankly, pretty awful. I think people forget that.

Lowest emotional ebb
“To be imposing on women, at a time when they must be feeling at their lowest physical and emotional ebb, the need to organise travel, bundling themselves on to Ryanair flights, shleping about Britain, taking time off work, having to leave their families.

“This is not a good situation to force women into when what they need is care. It is deeply wrong,” she said.

More than 95 per cent of the service’s work is funded by the National Health Service in the UK. Women from outside Britain must pay to avail of its services privately. An abortion costs between £400 (€465) and £1,500 (€1,750) depending on how far the pregnancy has progressed.

She said that in the vast majority of cases her organisation’s abortion services are free to women resident in Britain.

Mara Clarke, the founder of the Abortion Support Network in London which provides support to women from Ireland seeking to access abortion, said the women the organisation helped were in “dire financial straits, making huge sacrifices to get the services they need”.

“Recently we helped a mother who fed her three children toast and sandwiches for a month to save the money to pay for an abortion for her raped 17-year-old daughter.

“We helped a woman who needed her car but sold it and cut off her landline to raise the money.

“These are not women with credit cards or overdrafts. These are women who already have nothing, who are going to loan sharks, who are not eating trying to get the money together.”

‘Well over 400’
Since the network was founded in 2008, she said the number of women seeking its help had grown constantly, from 66 the first year to about 200 the second, and she expected the number this year to be “well over 400”.

While nationally in Britain about 2 per cent of abortions were carried out later than 20 weeks’ gestation, about 8 per cent of the women supported by the network had late-term abortions.

“This is because they are raising the money and, of course, the later they have it the more expensive it is and more traumatic.”

Click here to access the website for abortion travel and information on how to get involved (or if you need help) by clicking HERE.

If you are in Ireland looking for help, you may find resources on this site helpful, click HERE.

Original post is from the Irish Times, found HERE.

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