Irish Women Are Flying #HomeToVote In Historic Abortion Referendum

photographed by Beth Sacca.
With less than a day to go until Ireland's historic referendum on whether or not to repeal the country's Eighth Amendment — which gives a woman and a fetus equal right to life, effectively outlawing abortion — emotions are running high on both sides of the argument.
The stakes are high and in recent days Irish people have been traveling home from all over the world to cast their votes, taking to social media to document their journeys and reasoning via the #HomeToVote hashtag.
People planning on voting to repeal the amendment have been particularly vocal in sharing their accounts, with many traveling halfway across the world to make their voices heard. They're coming home to Ireland from as far as the United States, Argentina, Australia, Japan, Thailand, Costa Rica, and Vietnam.
Many others are making the journey to Ireland from continental Europe, from Sweden, the Netherlands, and Belgium.
Some social media users shared tales of the financial sacrifice they and their loved ones were making to #VoteYes, but many said it paled in comparison to the cost many Irish women (until only recently) have had to pay – in some cases up to $2,600 – to access abortion services at private clinics in England.
The mass migration back to Ireland to repeal the amendment mirrors the trip many made to vote in the country's 2015 referendum that legalized same-sex marriage.
If Yes prevails in the vote, the results of which will be announced late Friday evening and into Saturday morning local time, Ireland's proposed abortion bill will allow women to seek the procedure up to 12 weeks into a pregnancy. In the event of a No vote, the country's strict abortion laws will remain in place.

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