14/01/2016

NI's First Transgender Candidate To Stand In Next Election

Northern Ireland's first transgender candidate is to stand in the next election.

Transgender activist Ellen Murray has confirmed she will be standing in east Belfast as a candidate for the Green Party in the upcoming Assembly elections.

She said: "I am delighted and excited to put my name forward as a Green Party candidate in the upcoming Assembly election.

"Having spent a number of years working with marginalised young people, I believe the time is right for change in Northern Ireland, to bring about equality for all.

"There is clear under-representation of many groups within the Assembly, including women, young people and the LGBTQ community. I will to give a voice to those who need it most.

"I am standing for election because I believe that our political system, which impinges on every aspect of our lives, should be accessible to everyone.

"As a young, queer, trans woman, I hope that standing for election as an MLA will offer choice and hope for those who need it most.

"Almost two decades after the Good Friday Agreement, West Belfast is still one of the most deprived and disadvantaged areas in Western Europe, in part due to the wasteful zero sum politics at Stormont by the Executive parties.

"The Fresh Start agreement has exacerbated this by cutting welfare and benefits while gifting tax cuts to corporations, something which, as a social justice campaigner, I strongly oppose.

"I am proud to stand for the Green Party which has such a strong record on social issues. Having more Greens in Stormont can only help to improve the quality of life for everyone in Northern Ireland."

(CD/MH)

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