Nicola Sturgeon

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Nicola Sturgeon is the Scottish National Party leader, First Minister of Scotland, and MSP for Glasgow Southside. She was Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing from 2007 until 2012, and Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure, Investment and Cities from 2012 until 2014.


Interview from October 2012, asked about reducing the 24-week abortion limit:

"On a personal basis, I'm not persuaded of the case for reducing the abortion time limit. A vast majority of abortions take place well before 20 weeks, there's a tiny proportion between 20 and 24 weeks. I don't believe there is evidence that backs up a reduction in the time limit…"[1]

(Note: currently (2014) the Scottish Parliament does not have powers to set abortion limits.)


In February 2011, in a written response to a question on the usefulness of homeopathy from homeopathy supporter Rhona Brankin, Sturgeon responded in the role of Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing:

"Homoeopathy in the NHS is used only by registered health care professionals, integrated within their wider practice. It is reported as useful, both in specialist secondary care and in the 50% or so of general practices in Scotland which prescribe homoeopathy (with the use in those under 16 years doubling between 2000 to 2003).
"There may be debate about the scientific mechanism underpinning the results obtained, with respect to the relative contribution of the holistic consultation process, the action of the homoeopathic remedy, and placebo effects, but the results are clear, with research showing high levels of safety, patient satisfaction, consultation quality, patient enablement, and useful outcomes."[2][3]


In March 2011, Nicola Sturgeon addressed the SNP conference, speaking in favour of the party's policy on minimum per-unit alcohol pricing.[4]

Keir Liddle wrote a July 2010 blog post about evidence-based alcohol policy here.

Same-sex marriage

In September 2011, the Scottish government launched a consultation on same-sex marriage. Sturgeon was quoted as saying:

"In publishing the consultation today, we are setting out our initial view. We tend towards the view that same-sex marriage should be introduced.
"However, we are aware that for religious reasons, some faith groups and celebrants may not want to solemnise same-sex marriages, and that is why we are making it clear that they should not be obliged to do so."[5]


  1. (in video abortion question at 28:30)

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