Statement by Alan Kelly TD on Vicky Phelan

14 November 2022

Commenting on the sad passing of Vicky Phelan, Labour TD Alan Kelly said:

“My thoughts are with Vicky’s family, particularly Jim, Amelia and Darragh and all the Phelan and Kelly families. I’m also thinking of her good friends Lorraine Walsh, Stephen Teap and John Wall as well as many others. Vicky brought something special to the lives of all who knew her well and I am very lucky to have been able to call her a good friend over the last five years.

“I have said so many times both publicly and privately that the day I met Vicky, my life changed. There isn’t a person in Ireland who Vicky didn’t inspire in her tenacious fight for justice. When she spoke out on any issue, the nation listened. She used her experiences to help begin what will doubtless be a decade’s long campaign of reform around healthcare in Ireland.

“Many words will be used to describe Vicky over the coming days, months and years. Brave, fighter, disruptor, inspiration, change-maker, straight talker and so many more. Those words don’t go far enough to describe the person that she was and the many legacies she will leave behind. Vicky courageously continued to fight for what was right for her and the women of Ireland right up until the very end. She empowered everyone in Ireland to think differently about their health, to ask questions and fight for the best treatments and health service that everyone deserves.

“As someone who knew Vicky well as a friend, I know that she won’t be defined by the State’s failings but instead by the way she has changed things for the better for the people of Ireland.

“Rest in peace to my dear friend, Vicky. You were the best. Suaimhneas síoraí dá hanam dílís.”

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