Northern Ireland news

Stephanie Quigley resigns from SDLP over abortion

Stephanie Quigley with her father, former SDLP councillor Gerry McLaughlin
Connla Young

An SDLP councillor has resigned from the party over its stance on abortion.

Causeway Coast and Glens councillor Stephanie Quigley told the party on Monday that she was quitting.

Ms Quigley, whose father Gerry McLauglin was an SDLP councillor in Coleraine for many years, last night said the right to life was at the core of her politics.

"My natural home was in the SDLP,” she said.

“It was where my father honed his political voice.

“The philosophy which my father espoused was based on non-violence and the right to life.

“I followed in his footsteps and held the right to life and the life of the unborn child as the cornerstone of my political philosophy.”

Ms Quigley said she could no longer remain a member of the SDLP given its position on the matter.

Ms Quigley, who will continue to serve as an independent councillor, added: “I have made friends for life within the party and wish them all the best for the future. I must however place the rights of those without a voice ahead of populism.”

A spokeswoman for the SDLP said: "The SDLP has accepted the resignation of Stephanie Quigley.

“We wish her well for the future."

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