CITY councillor Laura Lacey has won the Pride of Gwent LGBTQ+ Campaigner Award, sponsored by Newport Bus.

Cllr Lacey, who represents the Ringland ward on Newport City Council, has been recognised for her work in fighting for LGBTQ+ causes and representing the city's communities.

She capped off a busy year which took her to the Senedd and the driving seat of the city’s second-ever Pride parade at the Rodney Parade winners’ ceremony, Thursday, December 7, sponsored by ND Care & Support.

“I’ve been the council’s LGBTQ+ champion for a number of years and it’s a responsibility I love,” Cllr Lacey said.

“My work has escalated in the last two years as I became involved with Pride in the Port. I’ve been able to become a much more visual ally and members of the LGBTQ+ community in Newport have been able to contact me directly.”

South Wales Argus:

This November, Newport signed to become the second Fast Track City in Wales – part of an international initiative to end new cases of HIV by the end of the decade.

“Working with the Pride in the Port team shows me there is a wonderful LGBTQ+ community in Newport and the wider Gwent area and we have a wonderful community of supportive allies and organisations who will go all out to make this city as inclusive as possible," she said.

“We still have so much more to do and I will continue to push on, to challenge, and to speak out until the community feels safe, especially for our Trans+ residents.”

Cllr Lacey said she was “humbled” to accept the award, with council leader Cllr Jane Mudd and deputy leader Deb Davies also in attendance.

“Wales is a shining beacon within the UK, where at a Westminster level we are seeing a massive degradation of rights,” she said.

South Wales Argus: Pride of Gwent Awards 2023

The councillor praises the Welsh Government for “making all the right noises” on LGBTQ+ issues, particularly with its action plan to make Wales the most LGBTQ+ friendly nation in Europe.

“It’s important for me that my children see me being an active and vocal ally, calling out hate and bigotry, not just locally but nationally,” she said.

“I hope I’m instilling in them the values I live by – to make others know they are loved and valued and always have their backs.

“It’s not about personal gain – it’s about hopefully making this city a nice place to be.”