Irish firefighters condemn Save the 8th’s firefighter ad as ‘oppressing’

The Save the 8th campaign have gotten some serious attention for a series of print ads targeted towards men. 

The ads show soldiers and firefighters saving young children from various situations. 

The ads have been condemned by Irish firefighters, who spoke to The Worker's Party.

Sara Phelan, a firefighter at Tallaght fire station, said: 'The sexism in this ad is unbelievable.'

'Not only does it presume that being a firefighter is a typically ‘manly’ job – and not one that women do. It also uses the good reputation which my profession has, to campaign against my right to access basic healthcare services like abortion, and possibly endanger my life,' she said, in a statement on The Worker's Party website. 

'I am campaigning actively for a Yes vote in the upcoming referendum, precisely because I believe Ireland treats women as second class citizens. This ad perpetuates that inequality.'

David Gardiner,also a firefigher at Tallaght fire station said: 'Nothing about the job I do equates to being a supporter of a No vote in the upcoming referendum.'

'My job is about safeguarding and protecting lives – and that is also why I am campaigning for a yes vote on May 25th with the Workers’ Party and Together for Yes.'

'Myself and Sara work alongside each other as firefighters as equals, and we canvass alongside each other as equals also, calling for a Yes vote on May 25th. It is a total misrepresentation of the work we do and the values we hold to link being a firefighter to the oppression of women’s rights – as this ad does.'

“I am calling on the Referendum Commission to intervene, and ensure the withdrawal of this ad.”