Sex change Tory hopeful says she should be judged on her merits

Share this article

A TRANSSEXUAL intending to stand for the Conservative Party in a local government election has said she understands why people are curious about her.

But Rebecca Baty, 38, who had an operation to change her gender ten years ago, described the issue as a “storm in a tea cup”.

She hopes to stand for the Tory Party in a ward in the north London borough of Haringey in May.

Ms Baty, who joined the Conservatives in 1986, refused to reveal details about her past life or what she was called when she was a man.

She said: “It’s something you move on from. It’s a point in your life and then you get on with the issues that matter. I don’t wake up in the morning and think ‘Gosh I’m a transsexual, what transsexual things should I be doing today?’.

“I think people who have their own judgment will judge me on my ability to do the job.

“People who are naturally prejudiced will vote against me for that reason. I’m sure there will be people who take issue with it, but there are people that will take issue with anything.”

The prospective councillor is a project manager and has worked for some of the biggest names in the City.

After leaving Kingston Polytechnic during the second year of her chemistry and business studies degree, her first job was working with the church commissioners.

Since then, she has established her own freelance consultancy and has worked with Barclays, Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse.

Her father is a retired parish priest and her mother is a retired teacher who come from the English-Welsh border area.

A staunch Thatcherite, Ms Baty said she has only ever experienced limited hostility in the Conservative party.

She said: “I think she [Margaret Thatcher] was the answer to the problem at the time. I can remember the power cuts in the Seventies and the shambles of the last Labour government.

“In all my years in the Conservative Party at grassroots level I have never seen anything other than sporadic homophobia or sporadic racism.

“I find I have far more of a problem with people in the socialist parties who are openly hostile or want to put me in a box. The Conservatives judge people on their merits.”

Referring to her sexuality, she added: “I can see there will be a certain level of curiosity about it but most people will let their raised eyebrows down and get on with the real issues.

“In the end people will vote for me because I’m a libertarian and a Conservative, not against me for another reason.”

Ms Baty, who owns a house in Tottenham as well as a vineyard in South Africa, attacked Haringey council for the way it was run.