A Plain English Guide to the Referendum

On Tuesday 8th May Lawyers for Choice launched “A Plain English Guide to the Referendum”, a clear and comprehensive guide to the upcoming Referendum to answer common questions about the referendum. You can download and print copies of the guide here. An easy to read version of our leaflet was made by the Center for Disability Law and Policy at NUIG and it is available for download here.

We are also sending printed copies and badges to groups around the country, if you would like some email us at lawyers4choice@gmail.com.

Speaking at the launch at the Legal Eagle, Chancery Place, were:

· Amanda Mellet, Mellet v Ireland (TMFR)

· Natalia Fernandez, Migrants and Ethnic-minorities for Reproductive Justice

· Emma Burns, the Centre for Disability Law and Policy

· Katie Dawson BL

For those who missed the launch, videos of each of the speakers are available on our YouTube channel here!

On the day

Organiser, Dr Ruth Fletcher, Senior Lecturer in Medical Law, QMUL, said:

“I’m proud to be part of the legal campaign for Together4Yes because medical law needs to work with pregnant people, not against them.

Lawyers for Choice work to improve public understanding of Irish abortion law. We want to be part of answering those questions. That’s why we’ve produced this guide.

This Referendum could be an important step in telling a different story about Ireland. The campaign could create the space for a different kind of public legal conversation, one that listens to pregnant people’s experiences and works with them to make a caring legal system. But this kind of legal storytelling needs good quality legal information, and to hear from those who have been excluded from the conversation in the past.”

Speaking at the Launch, Katie Dawson BL said:

“At canvasses and meetings throughout the country people are asking tough questions about abortion law, about consent and secrecy in sex, pregnancy and health care, and about the proper role of the constitution in a legal system. Telling a new story about Ireland through this public legal conversation is not easy. If we want to make the most of what the referendum might be, we need to find new ways of listening and turning what we hear into legal guidance.”

Organiser Sinead Williams said:

“Lawyers for Choice have invited speakers who have different experiences of the Eighth Amendment and how it contributes to a harmful legal environment. We need to learn from the resourcefulness of migrants, people with disabilities, human rights litigants and social justice lawyers.

Together, with quality legal information and knowledge of people’s everyday lives, we can overcome the cruelty of the Eighth Amendment. With a yes vote on the 25th May we can tell a new legal story of Ireland, one that speaks to the everyday compassion we see around us making tough situations a little better.”

Lawyers for Choice also provide #AskALawyer services with local #Together4Yes groups around the country. If you would like a member to come speak at an event or stall email us at lawyers4choice@gmail.com


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