Sunday 18 August 2019

Rows and bullying claims widespread

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Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald has claimed that cases of alleged bullying within the party are "localised incidents" despite complaints from members throughout Ireland.

The party has repeatedly denied there is a culture of bullying. Here are various complaints and rows that have arisen in several counties.

Dublin - Ms McDonald's former voluntary driver has become embroiled in an alleged bullying row. The woman, who is respected in the party, claims she was branded a "c***" during a row by an individual who is understood to have since left Sinn Féin. She also claims she was accused of compiling a "file" on Ms McDonald. Ms McDonald has said she doesn't believe a file was compiled on her.

Tipperary - Councillor Séamus 'Séamie' Morris quit the party this month amid claims he was subjected to "unfounded and untruthful allegations".

Wicklow - Human rights activist Tara Reynor-O'Grady, mother of Hollywood star Jack Reynor, was thrown out of the party over an internal feud. She had represented three councillors - Gerry O'Neill, John Snell and Oliver O'Brien - in an internal party dispute. They have been expelled from Sinn Féin.

Limerick - in September, councillor Lisa Marie Sheehy resigned, alleging there was a "hostile and toxic" environment within the party.

Westmeath - During the summer, Sinn Féin councillor Paul Hogan claimed he had been bullied by party members.

Kildare - party member Sorcha O'Neill quit in April claiming her allegations of bullying were ignored.

Cork - Former Cork East TD Sandra McLellan didn't run in the last election and effectively quit politics as a result of her alleged mistreatment.

Tyrone - Sorcha McAnespy, who quit as a Sinn Féin councillor in 2014, has claimed she was exposed to a "toxic" atmosphere within the party.

Irish Independent

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