Independent TD Mattie McGrath has said that the rejection of Deputy Clare Daly’s Private Members Bill on abortion would be a proportionate and just outcome to the debate. Deputy McGrath made his comments ahead of the vote on the Bill which is expected to expose deep division within the Labour Party in particular:
“It is my genuine hope that the Bill will not be accepted. Despite the huge media attention it has generated over the last week it is very far from being representative of the debate amongst parents of unborn children with severe life limiting disabilities.
The facts are that the vast amount of parents who experience this trauma in their lives continue with the pregnancy and cherish each and every moment of it, even in the midst of such emotional pain.
The language that has been used in this debate has often been grossly offensive to parents who have carried their children to birth.
I have been in regular communication with advocacy groups who represent the interests of parents and children who have been misleadingly labelled as having conditions that are ‘incompatible with life.’
The medical and social reality is that this term is practically meaningless and it invites a view of the child that is deeply flawed.
The parents of these children have told me that they have been disturbed and incredibly distressed by the descriptions of them that have been uncritically accepted in this debate. Why are their voices being ignored in this debate?
We must have a more proportionate and rounded view of this incredibly sensitive subject and not succumb to the belief that this Bill is representative of the will of the majority of parents of children who are diagnosed with such life limiting conditions,” concluded Deputy McGrath.