A total of 6,666 abortions were carried out in Ireland last year, according to official figures.
It is the first full year figures have been available, following a 66% vote to repeal the Eighth Amendment in a 2018 referendum. Abortion services in Ireland commenced on 1 January 2019.
Official figures from the UK Department of Health and Social Care, show an additional 375 abortions took place in England and Wales last year where a Republic of Ireland address was provided. Meanwhile, 67 of the abortions that took place in Ireland in 2019 were for women from Northern Ireland, taking the number of abortions for Irish resident women in Ireland to 6,599.
The total number of abortions, in 2019, for Irish resident women that were performed in Ireland, England and Wales was 6,974.
Before new abortion legislation was introduced to Ireland, in 2018, the number of abortions that took place in England and Wales for women who are Irish residents was 2,879. A further 32 abortions were reported to have taken place in Ireland under the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act, taking the total number of abortions for Ireland residents to 2,911.
It means that the total number of abortions that have taken place for Irish resident women in England, Wales and Ireland recorded in official statistics has increased from 2,911 to 6,794 since the legislation was introduced to Ireland – this represents an additional 3,883 abortions, an increase of 133%.
Between tomorrow and Saturday (31 June – 4 July) tens of thousands of people are expected to stream Ireland’s Rally for Life events, which has the theme United for Life.
A spokesperson for Right to Life UK, Catherine Robinson said:
“It is a tragedy for Ireland that 6,666 lives were lost to abortion in 2019. Every one of these abortions represents a failure to protect the lives of babies in the womb and a failure to offer full support to women with unplanned pregnancies.
“Abortion campaigners claimed before the referendum that introducing abortion to Ireland would make no difference to abortion numbers. These official figures show how untrue this claim was with a very large increase in the number of abortions taking place for women who are Irish residents.”