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Amnesty International’s ’25 Annoying Things About Being Pregnant’:

Jacky Jones asks, “Who can be trusted to provide services respecting women’s human rights?
When it comes to maternity care, it seems service providers just can’t get it right”.  The Irish Times, May 16th 2017.


Midwives for Choice chairperson, Philomena Canning, is published in the Irish Times, May 12th 2017

“New maternity hospital will be Europe’s biggest birth factory: Industrialised and interventionist childbirth facilities fly in face of women’s human rights”




Midwives for Choice Presents “Human Rights in Childbirth Workshops”

Videos of the MfC Launch

Midwives for Choice Launch Press Release

Press release – for immediate release,
Thursday 28 January

Midwives launch pro-choice campaign advocating for repeal of 8th amendment

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A pro-choice campaign led by health care professionals, Midwives for Choice, will launch on Saturday 30 January.

The campaign will represent midwives and consumers of maternity services across Ireland who share its aims and objectives of safe, high-quality reproductive, maternal and newborn health care.

Says campaign spokesperson Philomena Canning: ‘The eighth amendment has failed in its objective of fetal protection from abortion. While undermining the human rights of women by denying access to safe, free and legal abortion in Ireland, the eighth amendment also has damning implications for choice across the spectrum of pregnancy and childbirth, evidenced by its exclusion of all pregnant women from the National Consent Policy.

‘Denying women a role in decision-making about their care in pregnancy and childbirth undermines the safety and welfare of mothers and babies. In the name of fetal protectionism, the eighth amendment provides for the enforced compliance of healthy women in childbirth with routine intervention – without medical necessity and contrary to best practice. As a consequence, physiological birth is increasingly becoming a vestige of the past, as the trend in the national Caesarean section rate, currently at 30 per cent, continues to rise. While the increase in surgical birth has not resulted in more live babies, the upward trend in Ireland’s maternal mortality rate is a pattern shown elsewhere to correlate with rising Caesarean section rates.

‘MfC welcomes the recognition by the just-published National Maternity Strategy of the need for an overhaul of maternity services incorporating midwifery-led care as the default model for best outcomes for healthy women and babies. However, we assert that the required reconfiguration identified by the Strategy can only be implemented by repeal of the eighth amendment, to enable meaningful woman-centred maternity care, contingent on pregnant women exercising full and informed consent and refusal.’

Says launch keynote speaker Elizabeth Prochaska, UK barrister and founder of Birthrights: ‘Midwives for Choice represents a significant breakthrough in reproductive choice activism in Ireland. As the campaign towards a referendum on the eighth amendment of the Irish constitution gains momentum, the voice of front line health care professionals – the guardians of women’s rights – cannot be underestimated. Birthrights welcomes Midwives for Choice to the growing international movement working towards improved human rights for pregnant women.’

[ends]Media contact: Ciara Considine, 087 6294969

Launch venue: Alexander Hotel, Fenian Street, Dublin 2

Talks: 11.30am-1.30pm


Inaugural members meeting: 2.30pm


Twitter: @midwives4choice

Download PDF: Press Release – Midwives for Choice 28 Jan, 2016

Official Launch

Promoting women’s human rights in pregnancy and childbirth contingent upon repeal of the 8th amendment.

Keynote Speaker: Elizabeth Prochaska, UK Barrister-at-Law and founder of Birthrights London

Other Speakers:

  • Philomena Canning, midwife and birth rights campaigner
  • Aja Teehan, Complainant in Teehan vs. HSE
  • Ailbhe Smyth, Convenor, Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment
  • Krysia Lynch, Chair of AIMS Ireland

Registration at 11:30am.  €20 concession €15

Followed by members AGM at 14:30.

WHEN Saturday, 30 January 2016 from 11:30 to 15:30 (GMT) – Add to Calendar

WHERE O’Callaghan Alexander Hotel – 41-47 Fenian Street Dublin 2 IE – View Map

Get your tickets here!


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