Politics

Lily Madigan: I want to be Labour’s first transgender MP

Lily Madigan is the Labour Party's first transgender women's officer but her appointment has ruffled some feathers.

The 19-year-old was elected to the position in Rochester and Strood earlier this month.

Lily campaigned to have the previous officer, Anne Ruzylo, removed due to her perceived transphobic views.

"I come from an under-represented section of womanhood," Lily tells Newsbeat.

"I thought I was the best person for the role. I'm pretty happy other people agreed."

Lily's appointment, and her application to be part of the Jo Cox Women In Leadership programme, has angered some parts of the press and (reportedly) members of the Labour Party too.

Image caption Jo Cox was murdered in June 2016 and was best known for her work with refugees in the UK

One right-wing website ran an article titled "Lily Madigan is not a woman" while the Times reported unnamed Labour supporters as saying Lily's application was a "monstrous insult" to female party members.

But Lily believes they have missed the motives behind the Jo Cox initiative.

"The whole point of the programme is to get a diverse group of talented women to stand for election and roles within the Labour movement and wider public life," Lily says.

"Transphobia in response to my application would be very much against that point.

"It's very reminiscent of homophobia in the 80s and I think they just know they are losing at this point."

Some of those already on the Women in Leadership programme have shared a message of support for Lily's application.

https://twitter.com/Alice_Smart/status/935859345929261059

But this isn't Lily's first experience of transphobia.

In 2016 she hired a solicitor after her school threatened to suspend her for wearing female clothes to school and continued to call her Liam, her name as a boy.

Original Article

BBC

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