The Labour candidate for Sutton and Cheam, Emily Brothers is the party’s first out trans nominee. She has spoken openly about her transition in the hope of being a positive role model for others with gender identity issues. Brothers is also blind, and in the past has fought for the rights of those with disabilities. She was instrumental in securing Disability Living Allowance for blind people. Read Get Real.’s interview with her here.
Trett is the Liberal Democrat candidate for Vauxhall and formerly led the party’s campaign for Equal Marriage as Chair of the LGBT+ Lib Dems. He has recently been in the news as the first parliamentary candidate to be openly HIV positive and has been praised for his frank discussion of the subject, helping to remove the taboo surrounding the disease.
Labour MP and candidate for Wallasey, Angela Eagle has been influential in politics since she was first elected in 1992. She was the first ever openly lesbian MP: also one half of the first set of twins to both be elected to the House of Commons. In October 2011, Eagle became Shadow Leader of the House, and in 2013 she became Chair of the Labour Party.
Trans activist Zoe O’Connell is running as the Liberal Democrat candidate for Maldon. She is currently the Secretary of the LGBT+ Liberal Democrats and has worked to promote transgender equality within the party and in its policies, stating: “A lot of the fight is not just about winning the issue – it’s about getting it on the agenda in the first place.”
James is the Conservative candidate for Stourbridge, a seat she has held since she stood as the party’s first openly lesbian candidate in 2010. Before becoming an MP she was a successful entrepreneur who co-founded and built up her own healthcare company. She recently claimed controversially that she believes Labour and the Tories are on an equal level in terms of equality, saying: “I wouldn’t put LGBT issues aside if I felt there was a marked difference between the parties on them…but I don’t think there is.”
The first openly trans male parliamentary candidate, Kiss is running for the Green party in the constituency Islington South and Finsbury. He is very active in several campaigns for affordable housing and campaigns against the inequality created by the London housing crisis, having found himself homeless in the past.
Stuart Andrew is seeking re-election as the Conservative candidate for Pudsey. He had an unconventional upbringing for a Tory MP, growing up in a working class family in Wales (he genuinely lived in Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch!) He found his way into politics through voluntary work and fundraising for charities such as the British Heart Foundation.
The current Chair of the LGBT+ Lib Dems, Page is running as a candidate for Manchester Gorton. He is a firm supporter of the party’s campaigns for improved mental health treatment and has spoken openly about his own struggles with anxiety and depression.
The Labour Party candidate for Stockton South who came out as bisexual in 2009 at an anti-homophobia march. She actively campaigns for LGBT+ rights and believes that legislation on LGBT+ issues is important in helping to accelerate progress towards sexual equality, comparing this to the change in social attitudes brought about by the smoking ban.
Plaid Cymru’s candidate for Ceredigion is a gay writer and broadcaster. His past work has included presenting the ITV Wales series Coast to Coast and Great Welsh Roads, writing several travel books and creating guidebooks for the gay scenes of Scotland, Ireland and Northern England. Although born in England, he has lived in Wales for fifteen years and is a Welsh speaker, and seeks a fairer relationship between Wales and Westminster.
Gabriella Jeakins (GR. News Editor)