30th October, 2012

The Pro Life Campaign has welcomed the call by members of the Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children for an independent review following the shocking weekend revelations about counselling practices at IFPA and HSE crisis pregnancy counselling clinics.

Reported in today’s Irish Independent, Fine Gael TD Jerry Buttimer, Chairmann of the Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children, said he would be contacting the HSE as a matter of urgency to “seek clarification on the nature, independence and partiality of their inquiry”.

His concerns were echoed by other members of the Committee including TDs Regina Doherty, Denis Naughton, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, Robert Troy, Mattie McGrath and Senator John Crown.

Dr Ruth Cullen of the Pro Life Campaign said: “We welcome the fact that the Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children are treating the findings of the undercover investigation with the seriousness they deserve.  It is vital that an independent review takes place without delay. These findings transcend the abortion debate.  The type of counselling shown by the undercover investigation to take place at IFPA and HSE run pregnancy counselling clinics quite literally puts women’s lives at risk.

She continued “We are calling for an independent public inquiry into how such professional malpractice has been allowed to go unnoticed and uncorrected by the body legally tasked with monitoring them. Since the Health Service Executive (HSE) are themselves implicated in the failure of proper governance of the crisis pregnancy agencies, they are part of the problem and cannot be allowed to supervise the investigation.”

“The reality is that the Irish taxpayer is subsidising  counsellors to give bad information to women.   This must be investigated promptly and thoroughly” Dr. Cullen concluded.

See link to today’s Irish Independent report here