Independent TD for Wexford

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Women are not Vessels – Labour & Fine Gael must act now, and not leave it to next Government…

In July, the chair of the UN Human Rights Committee, Sir Nigel Rodley, commented that Irish abortion law treats women as a “vessel” – his remarks could not have been more accurate. The details reported in the media over the weekend about the manner in which a pregnant woman – suicidal and the victim of rape – was treated by the State are nothing short of horrific. We cannot begin to imagine how traumatised this woman must be after suffering such a gross violation of her bodily integrity and privacy. Although we do not have the full facts, it also [...]

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Correcting the Record: Survivors of Symphysiotomy & the Murphy Report

On July 17th I spoke in the Dáil during Statements on the Commission of Investigation into Ireland’s Mother & Baby Homes. During my speech, I questioned the government’s decision to appoint Judge Yvonne Murphy to chair the Commission of Investigation, given that she was responsible for drafting the symphysiotomy redress proposals which have been entirely rejected by survivors. I quoted Marie O’Connor, chairperson of Survivors of Symphysiotomy, who told the UN Human Rights Committee, “The scheme is based on the official lie that these operations were medically acceptable. It forces women to waive their legal and constitutional rights before they [...]

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Dail Diary: Residents of the Mother & Baby Homes Deserve Truth & Accountability…

Dail Diary No. 35 – 21st July 2014 Residents of the Mother & Baby Homes Deserve Truth & Accountability… I got an opportunity last week to comment on the government’s plans to establish a Commission of Investigation into Ireland’s Mother & Baby Homes. I used my time to argue that this investigation should be as wide-ranging as possible – in particular, I said that the Magdalene Laundries should be included within the scope of the inquiry. I also asked the government how it planned to include survivors in this process, highlighting the fact that survivor testimony was omitted from previous [...]

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Dáil Diary no 34- 17th July 2014- Massacre in Gaza and the World is silent…

Dáil Diary no 34- 17th July 2014 Massacre in Gaza and the World is silent… For the third time in five years, the world’s fourth largest military power has launched a full-scale armed onslaught on one of its most deprived and overcrowded territories on the planet. Since Israel’s bombardment of the Gaza Strip began, more than 200 Palestinians have been killed. Nearly 80% of the dead are civilians, over 20% of them children, while Palestinian fire has killed one Israeli on the other side. But instead of demanding a halt to Israel’s campaign of collective punishment against what is still [...]

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