March to protest over ownership of new maternity hospital

A national march has been organised in protest against the “religious ownership” of the new National Maternity Hospital.

The march, which takes place next Sunday, May 7, is entitled “We Own Our Hospitals”.

It comes after almost 100,000 people signed an Uplift petition to prevent the Sisters of Charity becoming sole owners of the new National Maternity Hospital planned for the St Vincent’s Healthcare Group site in Dublin 4.

The march will begin at the Garden of Remembrance at 2pm and finish at Merrion Square at Leinster House.

It is being organised by Parents for Choice, who want to ensure that public healthcare facilities are accountable to the citizens of Ireland.

“We want to ensure that healthcare facilities paid for by the people of Ireland are accountable to and run by the people of Ireland,” said Parents for Choice spokeswoman Sinéad Redmond.

“Parents for Choice know there is an alternative to private religious ownership of women and children’s health services.”

She said her organisation asked that Health Minister Simon Harris listens to the wishes of the Irish people when it comes to the future of the new maternity hospital, not just via the protest but through all forums.

“We call on the minister to listen to the Irish public, who are making their views clearly known through protests, petitions, and social media, to reverse this decision, and to implement a modern, transparent system of ownership and governance of our national maternity hospital.”

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