Tag Archives: government

Updated @ 11am:Voting Prochoice in the EU elections.

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Even with all the candidates which are running in the 3 regions very few of them are openingly prochoice.

* how ever it seems that the person whom Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan has nominated to take his seat if he can not fill the one in the EU parliament is pro life.

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/merciful-absence-of-rancour-in-ming-s-eu-canvass-1.1783650

But the garda whistleblower, John Wilson, is happy to chat. Wilson, who underwent bowel cancer surgery in March, had intended to run as a Mingist independent candidate here (there is an actual inky Ming stamp of approval, bestowed on 15 approved local election candidates) but has just withdrawn for health reasons. He remains Ming’s “deeply proud and honoured” first sub for Europe.

“I’m pro-life and anti-drugs – I’d ban tobacco if I could”, says Wilson, “but he still chose me. He’s just a really genuine, decent individual . . .”

If you have any more info about candidates, leave a comment or catch me on twitter.

11am 23/05/2014 Updates

South independant Jillian Godsil

Midlands north west Independant Cordelia Níc Fhearraigh

Voting Prochoice in your local Elections.

This is very hard to do it seems. Each county Council is meant to have a list online of candidates who are running and how to contact them. But from talking to friends, it’s spotty at best.

However as I have stated in my other blog it is easier for us to try and communicate with them and to pool resources with each other to ask the questions we think are important and that for me is who is ProChoice. If two candidates are weighing up for me equally this will be the decider, or may rule out someone who other wise I would vote for.

So here is a link to a list of all the candidates I could find who are running in the local elections and how to contact them.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1E386rHzLnsrlaejUzin63ImWBfOb8APm7xMCkcrUsfY/edit?usp=sharing

Also that really well funded lobby group had the time and resources to get a bunch of local election candidates to sign thier pledge, so here’s the list of who not to vote for https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B954SdlrGC2lc1dQVkN0cmtLN2s/edit?usp=sharing

I will be doing a round up of the EU Candidates tomorrow.

 

 

 

Why I am Voting Prochoice!

 

This week I will be voting in the Eu elections, local elections and a by election in Dublin West.
So why am I asking Candidates to the EU parliament, if they are pro choice?
Policies set in the EU parliament effect us here in Ireland and it is to the EU court of human rights Irish women have to go again and again to try and get access to the health care we need in our own country. Currently there is report, called the Estrela, which sought to make clear that reproductive rights are human rights and

the importance of making contraception widely available, comprehensive sex education and quality family planning services. It also says that women have the right to decide freely and responsibly the number, timing and spacing of their children and underlines the importance of safe abortions.

http://reproductiverights.org/en/press-room/EU-parliament-fails-to-back-women-rights

It was rejected by an anti-choice alliance, will the candidate you are voting for join that anti choice alliance or will they work in Europe on your behalf to ensure that Ireland moves to give women the health care we the need here?

 

So why am I asking Candidates in the local elections if they are pro choice?

The majority of candidates who are running the local elections to be members of the County Council are members of political parties. They get to have input to party policy and to the debates and discussion which happen before a party adopts a stance on any issue. Often those who get elected to the County Council go on to seek election to the Dáíl, so it’s good to know what their stance is.

Also over the last 12 months we have seen County Councils passing motions in support of a referendum on the issue of Marriage Equality, hopefully we will see County Councils passing motions in support of a referendum to Repeal the 8th Amendment.

 

So why am I asking Candidates in the by elections if they are pro choice?

The Dáil is one of our legislative bodies, we have seen the how important it is when we have has several bills come to be voted upon in the Dáil chamber that our elected representatives be willing to vote in accordance with the wishes of the people who elected them. We need to let them know we are pro choice, that we will not wait 20 more years for the next abortion legislation and we do not want them to wait either.

So why I am Voting Prochoice ?

Because I don’t ever want to give any preference to someone who thinks women like me who have had abortions are murders, who think that they can be the gate keeper to the abortion rights which the majority of people in Ireland agree we should have. I do not want any one who thinks it is ok for women to have to travel to get the health care they need to be voted in to a position of any significance via my vote.

 

Voting and why I do it.

I have mentioned before that I read this book around the same time I became a teenager.
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It is the story of the fight for women’s suffrage in the USA. It made me aware of the countless hours women of many generations worked so hard for to get the right to vote some suffered horribly in vile prisons and some even died.

Women in Ireland did not have the Vote until 1928.
Yep 1928 which means we have not had the right to Vote yet for a 100 years.

Suffragettes including our most famous ones Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington seemed to think once women had the Vote the world would be radically changed as we would be then equal with men and able to change laws and make the world and the country a fairer place.

While I think if those brave ladies were to travel forward in time there are many things they would be pleased with but I do not think that the level social change and ‘equality’ would be something they would be happy with.

Women having the Vote did give us a certain amount of power but as we all know well now it was not the Pancea for all ills the suffragette had hoped it would be. But that does not mean it won’t be as we move forward and with the internet making it easier for us to communicate and collate information, making an informed choice and being informed on whom to vote for has gotten easier.

Every time I get a polling card with my name on it I think of the women who dedicated themselves in the fight to get women the right to Vote and didn’t live to get to Vote themselves. 86 years of having the Vote, I don’t think women have done enough with it. The old boy’s club is still very much the way things are in our houses of parliament. We deserve better.

I am refusing personally to vote for any candidate who is not pro choice to some extent. I will never give a preference to any candidate who considered women like me to have committed murder. I will never give a preference to a any candidate who does not see the need for a separation of church and state esp in our schools and health care system. I will never give a preference to any candidate who does not see the need for a comprehensive universal sex and sexuality education program in our schools.

I have had people ask me why bother, well that just means things stay the way they are. Often less then 55% of the people who are on the electoral roll turn out to vote and we have people who are eligible to vote who are not even registered to do so. If there is a low turn out in an area, which politicians can tell, due to the numbers being low then they don’t feel the need to work so hard on the issues being raised in those areas. You want to make a difference, get active, get informed and vote.
It is a lot easier to do so now, then it was when women first got the vote in 1928, it’s easier now then it was 50 years go even 20 years ago.

I Vote because I believe I have an honour and a duty to do so. I have never failed to do so in the last 21 years and I hope I never do.

Death shows need for abortion services, family planning organisation says

Death shows need for abortion services, family planning organisation says The Irish Times – Mon, Jul 22, 2013.

“Mr Behan said the IFPA frequently had clients who experience difficulties raising the money to travel and to pay for an abortion and who had later-term abortions as a result.

“If they were resident in the UK and there was a serious health issue the abortion would be available to them, free of charge on the NHS.”

He said the case underlined the need for abortion legislation which protected the health and not just the life of a woman.

The National Women’s Council of Ireland too said the case “points to the needs for safe and legal abortion services in Ireland” and to the “artificial and unworkable distinction between a threat to the health and a threat to the life of the woman”.

“It also shows the devastating impact being forced to journey overseas has on women emotionally and physically,” said Jacqueline Healy, women’s health and human rights spokeswoman with the council said.”

It is estimated 12 women a day travel to the UK for abortions, I wonder how many don’t due to the cost. All other maternity related services in this country are free. Where a woman needs an abortion due to the impact the pregnancy is having on her health she should be able to have it here.

The abortion support network takes calls everyday from desperate women who can’t afford to travel who are trying to scrape together the money needed. One of the volunteers who answers those calls, wrote about some of thier stories here. http://www.thejournal.ie/readme/column-the-debates-on-abortion-in-the-dail-wont-change-the-reality-irish-women-face-every-day-993657-Jul2013/

Given the cost it is no wonder that women traveling from Ireland put their lives at risk to return as soon as possible and with the stigma many do not get the aftercare they need, esp if things don’t go as best they can.

Abortion after care, is free. Both the physical check up and counseling if women needed it.
http://www.abortionaftercare.ie/ lists services around Ireland which are funded by the HSE.
But beware some of these are how ever pro life, esp the Cura branches.
Personally I would recommended in Dublin http://femplus.ie/services/crisis-pregnancy/

Micromachismo & Lapgate

So last night despite the fact I am on holidays I found myself camping out in front of the tv in the house we have rented for the week.

So I was up and watching when what is being called lapgate occurred.

Tom Barry FG had apologises for ‘horseplay’ with Aine Collins FG.
It is more then that is was an utter lack of respect for a fellow TD and party member, for the people they both represent and the country as whole as it happened in the Dáil voting chamber.

He would not have done it to a male T.D.

So the lead word in the title of this post is micromachismo which is defined thusly.

“micromachismo”, as defined by Bonino (psychiatric working on promoting equality between women and men ) :
For the author these are ” small, almost imperceptible controls and abuses of power quasi normalized that the males execute permanently. They are skilful arts of domain, maneuvers and strategies that, without being very notable, they restrict and force insidiously and repeatedly the personal power, the autonomy and the psychic balance of the women, committing an outrage in addition against the democratization of the relations. Given his invisibility they are exercised generally by total impunity ” (Bonino, 2004: 3).

Last night we watch aghast as a TD grabbed another TD with out their consent and restrained them while the Dáil was in the process of finally trying to pass a bill to legislate for the Supreme court ruling on the X case.

21 years after that 14 year old girl was raped, ended up pregnant and wanted to end her life rather then be pregnant, there are people some of whom are members of our government who think during the debating session that accosting a woman in her place of work is ‘horseplay’.

What it is is horseshit. I have had mixed feelings on the bill and was by turns encouraged and disappointed by the debate last night but Lapgate shows us how far we have to go still in this country in treating women as equals and respecting them.

Survivors of Symphysiotomy are still waiting 10 years on.

It has been over 3 years from when I first wrote about the horrors of symphysiotomy in Ireland here on my blog. Back then many people had no idea what it was, or why it happened or the horrendous effect it had on the women it was preformed on. That changed when it was featured on Prime time.

The reason it was featured was that it was then 10 years from when the Survivors of symphysiotomy had been promised a review of their cases. The Article here dated 24/06/2003 show those women sharing their stories.

Symphysiotomy survivors demand inquiry – irishhealth.com.

Some of those women are no longer with us and while we have seen the government promise a bill to amend the statute of limitation to allow for redress there is no sign of it reaching the final stages as the end of the working period for the Dáil draws near, despite The Statute of Limitations (Amendment) Bill 2013 passing Second Stage on 17 April.

So the Survivors of Symphysiotomy put out the word they would be demostrating today and http://tradeuniontv.ie/ were there to cover it.

Survivors of Symphysiotomy

19 June 2013
SoS driven to demonstrate: 8 and 1/2 weeks later, our Bill STILL hasn’t come before the Justice Committee. The Minister for Justice doesn’t seem to be making himself available, so the Bill has yet to be tabled. We are holding a DEMO – our first – this coming Wednesday, 26 June, at 11 a.m., outside the Dail. Please bring banners, buggies and above all, bodies! Let’s shame this Government into doing the right thing by survivors of symphysiotomy.

Ireland is indeed being haunted by the many wrongs it allowed to happen, hopefully those ladies will not be made to wait any longer.

Autism Funding not spent, while families struggle.

http://www.thejournal.ie/hse-defends-e300000-autism-spend-in-reillys-political-area-965518-Jun2013

While former Minister of State at the Department of Health and Labour TD Róisín Shortall accepts that there was no political interference in this case, she has called for an end to “potential cronyism or secret decision-making around the spending of public money”.

“All of those decisions should be taken in an open and transparent manner,” she said this morning. “Nobody is denying there was a need for services in north Dublin. There were long waiting lists and it is only right and proper that necessary staff should be provided. But there are long waiting lists in other areas and you have to ask why it is that the money announced has not been spent.”

Minister Reilly announced the €3 million in extra funding for autism services in January 2012. So far, just 10 per cent of that money has been spent. According to Freedom of Information documents requested and obtained by the Irish Times, none of the €1 million allocated for 2012 was used last year.

And yet it was this time last year the HSE moved the only two Child & Adolescent Mental Health service clinics from the north side of Dublin and put them in a building in Cherry Orchard Hospital.

These clinics are where schools and family Gps refer children for assessment for Autism spectrum and provide skill groups and support groups for parents. They link in with the schools in areas and other service provider but were moved to the other side of the city.

Which results in parents trying to juggle 2 buses cross the city with a child who often arrives too stressed or worn out to take part in the assessment process. Often appointments are missed due to child care issues when there are other children and it results in a whole day off school being needed to attend appointments. While it is a brand new building there is nothing on the site for parents who have to sit in reception for anything from 30 to 90mins and wait. There is no where to even go for a cup of tea or coffee, all you can do is sit and try recover from traveling over and gird yourself for the return journey, which can be far from pleasant given that a handful of stops after the hospital is CloverHill Prison.

Staff are not being replaced in those services and when they are eventually there is a back log, esp when it comes to speech and language specialists. The waiting lists are too long and children and families are left in limbo and unable access services needed so it is deplorable that this money was not spent.

All of the above has impacted badly on our family as my daughter was accepted for assessment while in 6th class and the on going process is still not completed despite her finishing 1st year in secondary school. The move, the lack of replacement staff and cases getting dropped in the shuffle the move, have all played it’s part in dragging out the assessment.

Needless to day the lack of transparency and the funding not being spent when there is a desperate need has me livid. The campaign to return both the Blanchardstown and Castleknock CAMHS to the communities they serve is on going with both the parents and staff putting pressure on the powers that be in the HSE.
While I would like to think that sense would prevail there seems to be little of that or consideration present in the government and HSE decision making process.