Today the Dail completed the second stage of the Bill to enable citizens vote on whether to retain the 8th amendment to the constitution.

This is undoubtedly a historic day but while a significant milestone it doesn’t mark the end of the journey.

Labour will campaign on this referendum as a party. We will put compassion for families that find themselves in difficult positions at the heart of the campaign.

We will reiterate the right of Irish women to have modern healthcare available at home.

We will do so with determination and dignity but we will respect those who hold different views that will be held as firmly as we hold ours.  Nobody under the age of 53 has had an opportunity to vote on the 8th amendment.

The Irish people will make the decision – not politicians. The Irish people deserve a debate that will inform not repulse them.