CORK county councillor June Murphy has joined the Social Democrat party, it has been announced.
The Fermoy Municipal District representative resigned from Sinn Féin in 2015, citing internal politics within the party after being elected to Cork County Council in 2014.
Ms Murphy has sat on the council as an independent since, but has now returned to party politics with Social Democrat leaders Róisín Shortall and Catherine Murphy citing her campaigning on issues, including mental health services, suicide prevention, domestic violence and sexual abuse, as attributes compatible with their party.
“June brings great experience and commitment to the party and is joining a thriving team of representatives in Cork city and county. Along with our party colleagues, we very much look forward to working with June to grow the Social Democrats movement as a dynamic force for change in Irish society,” the leaders said in joint statement.
Ms Murphy said she is happy to join the relatively new party.
“The party has a clear vision for a fairer and more decent Ireland and I am inspired by the passion and integrity of its co-leaders. It is a very solutions-focused party intent on improving people’s lives in relation to issues like social and affordable housing, healthcare and education,” she said.
“I am involved in representative politics to make a difference when it comes to local issues that I hold dear to my heart. I know that working alongside the Social Democrats this work will go from strength to strength,” she added.
The only other Social Democratic representative on Cork County Council is Douglas-based Joe Harris.
“I am very much looking forward to working alongside June in Cork County Council to advance the kind of policies we need in our local community. June is an incredibly hard-working public representative for people in her electoral area. She is a very strong addition to the party in Cork,” he said.
The party has a number of unelected representatives in other areas in Cork including Patricia Dwyer (Cork South Central), Sinéad Halpin (Cork North Central), Ciarán McCarthy (Cork North West); and local area representative for Cobh Ken Curtin.