Kent MP Rosie Duffield resigns as Labour whip after admitting lockdown breach
The Labour MP for Canterbury is no longer in a frontbench role after she admitted breaking lockdown rules.
Rosie Duffield has apologised and is no longer a Labour whip after she met her partner while they were living separately, in breach of coronavirus restrictions.
The Mail on Sunday said that she met her married partner for a long walk in her constituency in April, and that the MP also did not deny he visited her constituency house.
Ms Duffield, 48, told the paper that the pair observed the two-metre social distancing rules, but these incidents were before meetings between people from different households was allowed.
The pair are now thought to be living in the same property and her partner separated from his wife.
In a statement Ms Duffield said: “My partner and I have been attempting to navigate a difficult personal situation as responsibly as possible. I apologise that during that process, we breached the guidelines.
“A relationship breakdown is difficult at the best of times, let alone during a pandemic.
“I hope people can understand why I took the steps I did and know that I take responsibility for the breaches that occurred and for which I apologise.”
Ms Duffield is the latest public figure to have been accused of breaking lockdown rules.
Last week, the prime minister's top aide Dominic Cummings has sparked a nationwide debate by travelling hundreds of miles during the height of the UK's coronavirus lockdown, with his wife who was exhibiting symptoms.
Professor Neil Ferguson, the man behind the paper that prompted Boris Johnson to put the UK on lockdown, admitted to breaking lockdown rules when his partner visited him after he had recovered from the virus.