A 29-year-old activist in Jamaica is vying to become the first openly trans Member of Parliament (MP) to sit in the country’s House of Representatives. Rich Richards has said he will run as an independent candidate in the Saint Andrew Eastern Constituency in the next general election, due in 2021. In a country where tolerance and acceptance of trans people remains next to non-existent, Richards’ decision to campaign is one potentially ground-breaking in its effects. Richards broke ranks with the People’s National Party on Monday (1 July). He has been a member of the party since he was 15 years old. Now an independent politician, Richards is finding a foe in the form of both his former party, and the ruling Jamaica Labour Party. ‘As of today (Monday) I am in the process of putting together a campaign team. I’m going to be running as an independent candidate,’ Richards told the Jamacia Observer.