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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Introducing the keynote speaker for Celebrate the 8th - Melissa Ohden

In a move that will bring a whole new perspective to the abortion debate in Ireland, the Pro Life Campaign is delighted to welcome Melissa Ohden as the keynote speaker of the Celebrate the 8th vigil which is due to take place from 3-4pm in Molesworth Street, on Saturday 4th June 2016.

Melissa has an extraordinary story to tell.  She is a voice for the truly voiceless in society – people who survived abortions and were left to die but were saved when a member of hospital staff decided to intervene and save them.  Melissa was one of those babies.

The whole issue of babies born alive and left to die after failed abortions is, understandably, something the most abortion advocates don’t want to address.  It highlights what is perhaps the most disturbing aspect of the abortion debate – how a lack of respect for unborn human life in any way can lead to the kind of abuses that would shock even the most ardent supporter of the pro-choice cause.

Unfortunately, despite the fact that this is such a horrific issue, it’s something which doesn’t come up in the abortion debate in Ireland very often and even when it crops up in other parts of the debate, we find it difficult to come to terms with the fact that anyone would treat a baby in such a cruel way.  

Sadly too, Melissa’s story is not an isolated incidence. Official reports from England and Wales show that 66 babies died in this way in one year alone.  One of those babies struggled for life for 10 hours before expiring. But this fact inspires disbelief, not shock, in many who follow the debate in Ireland.

Just last week, Ireland was subjected to criticism from Canada at the UN’s Universal Periodic Review when Canada called on Ireland to make abortion available. But Canada itself has a record of allowing 491 babies to be born alive and left to die over a ten year period beginning in 2000.  The UN does not stand up for the right to life of these babies and international human rights groups like Amnesty International remain steadfastly silent.

Considering these facts, we hope that Melissa’s testimony will help to focus on the issue of what happens to babies when they are born alive after botched abortions.  What rights do they have? Why do the laws in so many countries disregard them in such an inhumane fashion? 

The Abortion Survivors Network (ASN) was set up by Melissa to help educate the public about failed abortions and survivors, and to provide emotional and psychological support to abortion survivors.  Since its inception, Melissa has been in contact with 206 survivors.

We are delighted and honoured to welcome her as a keynote speaker for the Celebrate the 8th event and we look forward to hearing her contribution on this very complex issue.  

Make sure you don't miss out on hearing Melissa speak - find out how you can organise a bus or find one in your area today!

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