Reproductive rights in Ireland

Reproductive rights in Ireland

Access to abortion in Ireland & N. Ireland

Sisters For Change, the London School of Economics Centre for the Study of Human Rights and Amnesty International are jointly convening a one-day conference to discuss reproductive rights in Ireland and Northern Ireland. The invitation-only event will take place at LSE on 19 March 2015.

The conference brings together legal and policy specialists with front line service providers to consider the legal and policy challenges to secure women’s reproductive rights and access to abortion across the island of Ireland. The discussion takes place in the context of an absence of clear clinical guidelines on abortion in Ireland and the narrow construction of the official consultation on possible reform of the law in Northern Ireland. The event aims to formulate new strategies to drive policy and legal change.

Conference Programme

9.00am Registration

9.15am Welcome and introductions
Jane Gordon, Sisters For Change Co-Founder & LSE Visiting Fellow

9.30am Session 1: The international human rights framework guaranteeing women’s reproductive rights

10.10am Session 2: The domestic legal framework inhibiting access to reproductive rights in Ireland and Northern Ireland

11.30am Session 3: Reproductive services: operating environment

2.00pm Session 4: Litigation and legislative challenge

3.30pm Group discussions on legal and policy change strategies

4.15pm Plenary feedback & discussion on next steps
Moderator: Jane Gordon, Sisters For Change

5.00pm Close

For further details or to inquire about invitations, please contact

Background to the discussion

To find out more about this subject, view Abortion: Ireland’s Guilty Secret? a BBC documentary that aired in February 2015.

Abortion is against the law in Northern Ireland, unlike the rest of the UK, where it has been legal for nearly 50 years. In the Republic of Ireland, the right-to-life of unborn children is enshrined in the constitution. But these laws don’t stop Irish women having abortions. In this film, reporter Alys Harte shares her investigation into the abortion issue and how it divides the young people of Ireland.