Today, Dublin’s statues are veiled in solidarity with Strike 4 Repeal

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Today is International Women's Day, and so it is only fitting that this afternoon, thousands of Irish women will gather on O'Connell Bridge in Dublin to participate in the Strike 4 Repeal

Similar gatherings will be happening all over the country, but before this morning's pickets began,  a few key characters in Dublin's cityscape were already striking. 

On your commute today, you may have noticed that some of Dublin's statues were obscured with black fabric. 

These statues are a symbol of solidarity from the Strike 4 Repeal movement for the 10-12 Irish women who must travel to the UK and further everyday to procure safe abortion practices.

The statues, veiled in black and carrying lightning bolts, the symbol of the movement, are cloaked and striking in alliance to represent how ingrained in Irish society the problem of reproductive rights is. 

In existence but rarely acknowledged, much like the statues, according to Strike 4 Repeal activists. 

The statues were obscured by volunteers of the movement, who were up at the crack of dawn to ensure that the statement would be in place for those who are unable to strike today to see on their way to work.

"We wanted to take a direct action that would make a visual impact," said one activist. 

"Visibility is very important because women who get an abortion in the UK or abroad, they return to a country that is full of stigma where no one talks about it."

"We targeted key monuments to make people aware of the strike. Those who are unable to strike will see the lightning bolt symbol and be reminded of what is going on in town later today," she finished. 

"Let us go out to march today to let out the truth that Ireland is not a safe place for women and pregnant persons," reads a statement on the Strike 4 Repeal Instagram page.  

"That our government is failing us in providing essential reproductive healthcare. That the life of anyone who is pregnant cannot be prioritised because of the 8th Amendment and that tragedies happen."

"That women have been told their physical and mental health must take a backseat. This is what every tourist, visitor, student, and worker to Ireland must know and every Irish person must consider. No more sweeping us under the carpet."

The Strike 4 Repeal movements "Meet me on the Bridge" video campaign has gone viral this week, with over 370,000 views and thousands of likes. 

The strike is happening today, kicking off at 10.30am in a picket at the Department of Justice and culminating in a mass gathering on O'Connell Bridge at 12.30am. 

SHEmazing! will be at the strike, so follow us on Snapchat @shemazingie and keep an eye on our Facebook for live updates. 

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