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Te Āti Awa, Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Porou
In 1995, former sex worker and nightclub performer Georgina Beyer of Carterton made global headlines by becoming the first transgender person ever elected as a mayor, anywhere in the world. She followed that by becoming the world's first transgender MP in 1999, winning the traditionally conservative Wairarapa seat for Labour.
While serving the needs of her rural electorate, Beyer also spoke from her own experience in support of the 2003 law change that decriminalised prostitution. And as New Zealand's most public, openly transgender woman she worked on behalf of the LGBTQI community, famously facing down Destiny Church's "Enough is Enough" anti-gay marriage protest rally on the steps of Parliament in 2004.
In this excerpt from a radio interview you can hear Beyer's comments after she was first elected Mayor of Carterton in 1995.
Find out more about Georgina Beyer:
Listen to a 1995 radio interview with Georgina Beyer.
Listen to Georgina Beyer dressing down Destiny Church protestors in 2004 in RNZ's Eye Witness programme.
Image: Wikimedia Commons, Georgina Beyer addressing an international conference on LGBT rights in Montreal, Canada 2006. By Montrealais [CC BY-SA 2.5].
Catalogue Reference 21563
Interviewer: Clare Sziranyi, Morning Report, RNZ National