Less than a week after Ireland voted to legislate for abortion, a report by the country’s Central Statistics Office has said that not enough babies are being born to replace the population.
The Vital Statistics report, published on Wednesday, shows that the number of babies born has continued to fall, down to 62,053 in 2017, a drop of 8,567 (12.1%) since 2007.
There were 62,053 births registered in 2017, 31,855 male births and 30,198 female births, a decrease of 1,844 on 2016. The 2017 total is 12.1% lower than in 2007 when 70,620 births were registered.
The 62,053 births represent an annual birth rate of 12.9 per thousand population. This rate is 0.6 per thousand population lower than in 2016.
The report also gives the total period fertility rate (TPFR), which represents the average number of children a woman is expected have. A value of 2.1 is generally considered to be the level at which the population would replace itself in the long run, ignoring migration. “In 2017 the TPFR for Ireland was 1.8, which is below replacement level.”
Despite the fall, Ireland is still has one of the highest fertility rates in Europe, behind only France and Sweden.
Now that Ireland has approved an abortion referendum striking down its pro-life legal protections for women and unborn children, the Irish Parliament will soon consider legislation that would legalize abortions on unborn babies as old as 6 months. The specific legislation has not been proposed yet but the Irish government said it wanted to legalize abortions up to 12 weeks and some abortions up to six months during the debate leading up to the vote on the abortion referendum.
More than one-third of babies (23,340 or 37.6%) were born outside of marriage/civil partnerships, and of these 58.9% were to co-habiting parents. In recent conception statistics for the UK, which include abortion rates, 68% of conceptions outside marriage or civil partnership resulted in a maternity (live birth or stillbirth), compared with 92% of conceptions within marriage or civil partnership.
LifeNews Note: Courtesy of SPUC. The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children is a leading pro-life organization in the United Kingdom.