Section: Comment

Savita: What Happens Next?

A young woman displaying a banner at one of the protests after Savita’s death. Photo courtesy of Ciara Gibbons.

What is a story without balance. Balance has never been so crucial to a story, as it is to the one of Savita Halappanavar. Balance between Praveen Halappanavar’s voice and the voice of the doctors at Galway University Hospital, balance between the significance of the foetus’ heartbeat and the significance of Savita’s heartbeat, balance between Savita’s right to life and her baby’s, balance between what’s wrong and what’s right. Savita Halappanavar’s death has transformed the Irish abortion debate. Men and women have turned out in their thousands to show their shock and o...

Facebook Putting On A Brave Face

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The darling of the social media age, a phenomenal success, over 1 billion active users and is the most visited website in the world on a daily basis. It has been linked with having a major impact on the media, politics, business and our society. Facebook has changed the world. How could such a valuable, successful and influential entity be under enormous pressure and face major criticisms? The company had one of the biggest market debuts in the history of the stock exchange on May 14th with over €80 million shares being traded on the Nasdaq within the 1st minute of going public with the s...

Referendum Results Signal That Drug Legalisation Is On The March

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On the day that Barack Obama was re-elected as President, two hugely significant referendums took place in the states of Colorado and Washington. For the first time in American history, voters approved the complete legalisation of marijuana, a development which could mark the beginning of the end of the ‘War on Drugs’. The phrase dates back to 1971, when President Nixon declared that drug use was “public enemy number one” and had to be fought aggressively. The counter-cultural movement, rising crime rates and the large-scale use of narcotics by American servicemen in Vietnam all led...

Delays Continue With Student Grants

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By Friday October 26th, there were still over 38,000 students waiting for any form of grant installment. Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) is the state agency responsible for accepting the new grant application and payments system, which was recently launched in June by Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn. It was estimated at the time it would save the exchequer €5 million annually, and was welcomed by Opposition parties and the USI at the time. Minister Quinn stated back in June, ‘Many students have had to wait for lengthy periods for their grants in the past and faced undu...

Lack of Legislation for Abortion in Ireland Comes Under the Spotlight

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On the 28th of October 2012 Savita Halappanavar, a dentist originally from India, died in the University Hospital Galway (UHG) from septicaemia. Two investigations have been launched to determine how she contracted the serious life threatening bacterial infection. Mrs Halappanavar presented in UHG on the 21st of October with back pains. It was found that the 31 year old woman who was 17 weeks pregnant was miscarrying. The type of miscarriage that she was having was what is termed as an inevitable miscarriage, where the neck of the cervix is open and the pregnancy cannot continue to term, e...

OPINION: Vote No in the ULSU Referendum

This Thursday, you will be asked to vote in a referendum which, if passed, will mean an increase of the Student Levy (currently €72) to €130, increasing to €150 in three years time, and a 2% increase annually thereafter. The proposed increase is to part fund a large capital project which will cost an estimated €40 million, half of which will be sourced by the University, and half provided by this increase in the Student Levy. As a result, Maguire’s pitches will undergo a badly needed renovation, the Arena will receive an extension to accommodate more facilities for Clubs and ...

UL Referendum – A Campus Students Deserve

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The University of Limerick is often regarded as Ireland’s sporting campus, and that may well be the case but it is due to the hard work of the University’s Clubs and Societies that this accolade can be attributed to the University.  However, the facilities that these Clubs and Societies have to work with are entirely inadequate and could well prove detrimental to the growth of the University's Clubs and Societies. This referendum gives the Students of this University a chance to vote on what they believe they deserve for their Union and their Clubs and Societies. If you take a look at ...

Turn The Tide on Suicide Launches New Campaign

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The Irish suicide prevention charity ‘Turn the tide on suicide’ or ‘3Ts’ has stepped up its ten year campaign to create a suicide prevention authority. 3Ts’ most recent campaign involves the placing of artwork in public places to raise awareness of the lack of mental health services in Ireland and also to highlight the broken promises of successive Irish Governments when it comes to addressing the prevalence of suicide in Irish society.  The Charity has also produced a video, highlighting the effects that suicide has on society, with over 700 deaths in Ireland attributed to suic...

Letters to the Editor

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Dear Sir, It is with trepidation and worry that I write to you today upon matters most troubling. I have noticed, along with my contemporaries and peers, an alarming rise in the number of times I have gone to the atm only to realise that some foolish blaggard seems to have emptied my account and drank its contents, then leaving me with his illgotten hangover! My question to you today sir is WHAT is THIS GOVERNMENT doing to keep my account full so it can be spent upon the finer things in life, like brandy and poor-people whips? And where was my Student Union when I woke up to find myse...

No Man is an Island: Why we need Students’ Unions

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We all like to think we are born free, but no man is an island. For many, University is the first taste of proper community, a shard of light penetrating the solipsistic self-involvement that typifies the individualism so often apparent in adolescence and the Leaving Cert. It is here that we first start properly evaluating our place within the world, our politics and our activism. Students' Unions have often times been a key driver of this most human of student pursuits – the quest to improve ourselves and the world around us. We have lost sight, in the last 2 decades, of what i...