Conservative MP Jamie Wallis has come out as trans in a moving personal statement detailing rape, blackmail and PTSD.
The 37-year-old, who was elected as the MP for Bridgend & Porthcawl in the 2019 election, is the UK’s first-ever openly trans member of Parliament. Wallis indicated that he was happy to continue using he/him pronouns in a follow-up statement.
“I’m trans. Or to be more accurate, I want to be,” Wallis wrote in the original statement shared on Twitter. “I’ve been diagnosed with gender dysphoria and I’ve felt this way since I was a very young child.
In the statement, Wallis detailed the psychological impact of being raped in September last year after a “hook up”.
“I have not been myself since this incident and I don’t think I will ever recover,” he wrote. “It is not something you ever forget, and it is not something you ever move on from.
Since then things have really taken a tumble. I am not OK.”
In February, the MP was fined £146 after driving into a telegraph pole, which Wallis says was related to the traumatic events detailed in the statement.
The statement also detailed that the MP had been the victim of blackmail at the beginning of 2020 after the perpetrator sent a photo to Wallis’s father and demanded £50,000 to not share the information publicly. According to Wallis, police intervened and the perpetrator was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison.
Conservative politicians have praised Wallis’s bravery.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson also shared support for the MP, despite making a transphobic joke just hours before the statement was released. Beginning a speech to Tory MPs on Tuesday night, Johnson said: “Good evening ladies and gentleman, or as Keir Starmer would put it, people who are assigned female or male at birth.”