Article 40.3.3 and the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill 2013: The Impetus for, and Process of, Legislative Change

Dr. Catherine O’Sullivan, Jennifer Schweppe and Dr. Eimear Spain

This article serves as an introduction to this special edition of the I.J.L.S. on the recent developments on abortion law in Ireland. It briefly explains what were the two main drivers behind the introduction of the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill 2013, namely the European Court of Human Right’s judgment against Ireland in the case of A., B. & C. v. Ireland, no. 25579/05 [2010] E.C.H.R. 2032 (16 December 2010) and the untimely death of Savita Halappanavar. It then reviews a series of public hearings, heard by the Joint Committee on Health and Children in January and May 2013, on how to best meet Ireland’s obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights and under the Constitution. Finally it details the genesis of this special edition and introduces the work of the contributors.

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