Laura Harmon – one of the youngest candidates in the upcoming Seanad elections – has revealed how coming out as gay politicised her, and inspired her career as a campaigner for change.
In a new campaign video, Laura speaks candidly about her motivation for becoming involved in politics.
“I was 20 years old and in college when I came out as gay, and this is what politicised me,” she says.
“I never thought marrying someone from the same sex would be an option for me or many of my friends, and I wanted to change that.”
During the Marriage Equality campaign, Laura was President of the USI, the Union of Students in Ireland. She led a hugely successful drive to get young people registered to vote in advance of the referendum date. Subsequently, she worked as Head of Mobilisation on the Together for Yes campaign.
In her new video, she says:
“We are Generation Change. We made grá the law, and we made mná the law, but there is still so much more to do. Our generation does not accept the status quo.
“I’m young, I’m progressive, I’m a woman, I’m gay, I’m a renter, I have debts… I’m an activist who has helped to bring about significant social change to the people of Ireland. I helped make Ireland a more open and welcoming place, and I believe I can do that again. Creating an Ireland that is accessible, ambitious and equal for all is my vision.”
The video is available to view here.
Laura Harmon is an activist, campaigner, and lifelong advocate for equality, who has worked with a range of civil society organisations. She grew up in the Gaeltacht Mhuscraí of Baile Mhúirne, Co. Cork, and is a graduate of University College Cork.