Saturday, July 19, 2014

Belgium Has A Transgender Parliamentarian!

Professor Petra De Sutter has become Belgian's first openly trans Member of Parliament.University of Ghent professor Petra De Sutter has become the second serving trans parlimentarian in Europe after recent elections in her nation. 

The head of the Reproductive Medicine Department at the University Hospital Ghent and associate professor of gynecology at the university ran for a European Parliament seat as a member of the Belgian Groen (Green) Party because she wanted to fight “for a more social and fairer Europe, where everyone feels at home” and against “an unpleasant mentality of everyone for themselves”.

De Sutter finished second in the May 25 balloting with 47,000 votes.   But the Greens were only able to secure one seat, and that went to current MEP Bart Staes.

Following reforms in Belgium this year, the 60 members of the Belgian Senate, the upper house of the Belgian federal Parliament are no longer elected but appointed.  50 of them come from regional and community parliaments, and the final ten are appointed by their political peers. 

De Sutter was sworn in July 10, and her appointment makes her not only the first transgender parliamentarian in Belgium, but the second currently serving one along with Anna Grodzka of Poland, the third overall in Europe, and the fourth ever internationally..  

Hopefully there will be more to come.

No comments: