Emma’s Story

Emma Sisk, 27, from Co. Tipperary, is a communications officer for the Irish Bishops’ Conference

“I believe every woman should be respected, empowered and treated equally. This is why I am pro-life.

“I see abortion as incompatible with feminism because it doesn’t recognise the strength we have as women. It deceives us into thinking we are not strong enough to be mothers. The founders of the early
feminist movement were strong pro-life advocates. For me, being a feminist and pro-life are inseparable. True feminism cares about the rights of all women, born and unborn.

“Irish women deserve better than abortion. We deserve better supports and practical resources in pregnancy and motherhood. Abortion is a reflection that we have not met the needs of women in pregnancy. I was born seven years after the Eighth Amendment was introduced. I don’t feel the law introduced in 1983 violates my rights as a woman.

“I’m proud and thankful I was born in a country where every person is welcomed in life and protected in law – especially the youngest members of our society, unborn babies.

“The reality of our pro-life laws is that we all have someone in our life – an aunt, uncle, friend, brother, sister, cousin, nephew, niece, son or daughter – who is in our life today because we don’t have local access to abortion in Ireland. We might not even know it. In Britain, 1 in 5 babies lives end in abortion every year and 185,000 abortions were performed in 2016. Without the Eighth Amendment, it will only be matter of time until we have a similar rate of abortion in Ireland.

“Some people say you can’t be a feminist unless you support abortion. Yet there are women like me – and there are many of us – who consider ourselves feminists and also respect life from the moment of conception.”