Labour Party’s first transgender councillor elected
The Labour Party has elected its first openly transgender councillor.
The opposition party took 18 of the 20 available seats on Wolverhampton City Council during last week’s English council elections.
Anwen Dawn Muston was elected in the city’s East Park ward with 1,022 votes – making her the party’s only current elected trans politician anywhere in the UK.
A number of other parties currently have trans councillors, including the Liberal Democrats, Conservatives, Greens and UKIP – but Ms Muston is the first Labour politician to break through.
She told PinkNews: “I am proud to have been elected, as the first openly out elected transgender politician at any level within the Labour Party.
Ms Muston, who stood unsuccessfully previously in a different ward, added: “I was not selected or elected because I am transgender, nor to tick an equality tick box.
“It’s because of my qualities and experience in dealing with local issues, along with all the hard work I put in during the election campaign – proving that I can do the job required and represent all communities regardless on a range of issues.
“I have had a good experience with no prejudice when attending local meeting or meeting residents who have had issues that needed to be resolved.”
She added: “Being transgender is secondary, however I would encourage other trans people who have the necessary skills and ability to have a go at public office. We still need to see an Elected MP, PCC, Assembly Member or MEP.
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“This is about getting on with your life once you have transitioned and being seen to take taking on everyday tasks that others do every day which will break down the barriers of the wider public and will pave the way for future generations to come.
“It’s taking part that counts whichever political party you belong to.”
A Labour councillor in Lambeth previously transitioned to female in the 1980s – but was widely mocked and ridiculed at the time.
Transgender people are vastly under-represented in politics.
Despite a growing number of openly LGB Members of Parliament, there are still no transgender MPs in the UK.
Trans politician Nikki Sinclaire was previously elected as a UKIP Member of the European Parliament, but was not out at the time. Ms Sinclaire later split from UKIP and failed to win re-election.