Minister: Online abuser "felt the world would be better without me"

New junior minister Marcella Corcoran Kennedy says online bullying should not be tolerated

Minister: Online abuser "felt the world would be better without me"

Marcella Corcoran Kennedy |

A new junior minister has said her life was threatened on social media during the general election campaign.

Minister of State for Health Promotion Marcella Corcoran Kennedy told the Dáil yesterday that she found it challenging to deal with online abuse.

“One should note the negativity, vilification and viciousness tossed at public representatives as if they were figures of stone, did not feel the same as everybody else and did not have a family the same as everybody else,” she said.

The Fine Gael TD added she did not believe the person who threatened her had any intention of taking her life but that it was a “horrible" experience. 

“It was not very nice to believe there was a man somewhere in the county who felt the world would be a better place without me and that he would be prepared to do time if I were removed from the world,” she said.

During a separate discussion on the future of the health service, Ms Marcella Corcoran Kennedy also said she was conscious as a parent and public representative of the high rate of obesity among children.

She told a Dáil debate on health it was “unfortunate” that one in four children and around 60% of the population are obese, with low-income individuals being most at risk.

“I will have to look into my heart on this one. I always thought I was curvaceous but have been told I am obese, so I better do something about it," she said.