UL Hospitals Group confirms there have been no “intimidatory” protests over abortion.

The Pro Life Campaign has called on Sinn Féin senator Paul Gavan to withdraw remarks he made that pro-life supporters had engaged in “intimidating protests” outside abortion facilities in Limerick City. The senator made his remarks on multiple occasions, including when he introduced a bill in the Seanad last month that singles out pro-life people and penalises them for exercising their constitutional right to peacefully assemble in public. This week, however, UL Hospitals Group confirmed that it has no record of any such “intimidatory” protests taking place.

Commenting on these latest developments, Eilís Mulroy, spokesperson for the Pro Life Campaign said:

“Senator Gavan made specific reference to protests in Limerick City, where he comes from. The statement this week from UL Hospitals Group that no such “intimidatory” protests have taken outside the facilities that carry out abortions in Limerick completely destroys the senator’s claims. He needs to do the decent thing and withdraw his totally unfounded claims and apologise for making them.

Ms Mulroy continued:

“Pro-choice groups have taken to smearing pro-life people and are constantly making baseless claims about totally peaceful pro-life people who are simply exercising their democratic right to assemble in public to make their point. It’s very easy to seize on one or two images and use them to caricature and falsely depict an entire group of innocent people. But it is grossly unfair and unacceptable to behave in such a way.

“The fact that senior politicians are getting in on the act is absolutely shameful. People are entitled to their good names and to not be smeared in such a way. The motivation behind the attacks on pro-life people is obviously political as some abortion supporters are determined to secure the introduction of censorship zones in order to rule out the possibility of pro-life gatherings from taking place. It is totally undemocratic and discriminatory what they are proposing to do,” Ms Mulroy concluded.

In a statement this week, a spokesperson for the UL Hospitals Group, said: “University Maternity Hospital Limerick (UMHL) has not received any official complaints from our service users, their partners or accompanying support persons, or our staff about protests outside the hospital.”.

The hospital source also told the local media in Limerick that they were not aware of any protests of the type described taking place and “certainly not intimidatory” protests, the source said.