Sinn Fein's Michelle Gildernew seeks damages after fall in Irish parliament.
Sinn Fein's pre-Budget launch in the Republic has been overshadowed by the revelation that one of its members is seeking damages for falling down the stairs in the Irish parliament.
Sinn Fein MP Michelle Gildernew (42) is seeking damages from the Leinster House authorities for physical and psychological harm for falling on the stairs and suffering a broken leg.
Ms Gildernew recently revealed that she had been fighting a 20-year battle with depression.
She had been visiting for a meeting of the Oireachtas Good Friday Agreement committee earlier this year. Her claim has been referred to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board, where the maximum she can be awarded is €87,300 (£70,000). It comes ahead of Sinn Fein's launch of its pre-Budget strategy today, where the party is expected to call for cuts to the salaries and expenses of TDs.
At the time of the incident last January, Ms Gildernew said: “I got my heel caught in a metal grate and fell down the stairs in a very undignified manner.”
Ms Gildernew told Fermanagh's Impartial Reporter newspaper that she had driven home from Dublin but went to hospital. She was called back later that week to be told that her leg was broken.
Sinn Fein has said Ms Gildernew is on sick leave and the case is a private matter between her and the authorities in Leinster House.