Symphysiotomy survivors reject €34m redress scheme, call for new plan

Symphysiotomy survivors reject €34m redress scheme, call for new plan

Survivors of Symphysiotomy (SOS) have voted overwhelmingly to reject the Government's €34m redress scheme.

Some 83% of SOS members who attended meetings in Cork and Dublin this weekend have rejected the proposals.

They described the scheme as unfair, restrictive, and said it was based around "unrealistic time limits".

Symphysiotomy involved cutting through the women's pelvis during childbirth, often without the patient's consent.

The redress scheme proposed by the Government had been strongly criticised by the Irish Council for Civil Liberties, who said it fell far short of meeting Ireland's international human rights obligations.

SOS represents 400 women. Chairperson Marie O'Connor said: "We are now asking the Government…to go back to the drawing board."

One survivor, who wishes to remain anonymous, underwent a symphysiotomy when she was just 25.

She says she was never asked for permission, nor was she told exactly what had been done afterwards.

"When I woke up in bed, I couldn’t move my legs. When I spoke to the Master afterwards…the word symphysiotomy wasn't even mentioned to me," she said.

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