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Georgina Beyer becomes first transgender woman elected to Parliament

10 December 1999

Georgina Beyer as Mayor of Carterton, 1995-2000
Georgina Beyer as Mayor of Carterton, 1995-2000 (Te Ara)

Georgina Beyer (Te Āti Awa, Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Raukawa and Ngāti Porou) won the Wairarapa electorate for Labour in 1999 by a margin of 3033 votes. Beyer became the world’s first transgender member of parliament when she was sworn in on 10 December 1999. 

Beyer had become Mayor of the Carterton District in 1995 and 2000, making her the first transgender woman mayor. Both victories were surprising, as Wairarapa was a conservative rural electorate.

In her maiden speech Beyer acknowledged her status as the first transgender MP and New Zealand’s role as a world leader, including being the first country where women won the right to vote. She wanted New Zealand to continue to lead the way, particularly in social policy and human rights, including LGBT rights, which were a strong focus for her during her eight years in Parliament.

How to cite this page

Georgina Beyer becomes first transgender woman elected to Parliament, URL: https://nzhistory.govt.nz/page/georgina-beyer-becomes-first-transgender-woman-elected-parliament, (Manatū Taonga — Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated