When I was elected in 2014 I decided that I would try to be a voice for people who did not have a voice.
This parliament is a powerful platform and we should be mindful to draw attention to the ethnic minorities and indigenous people of the world whose rights are trampled over by corrupt, power-hungry global interests, or who are marginalised by poor public policies and a lack of investment.
Whether it is the Xikrin people of Amazonia who I visited last month, whose lives are unsustainable because of mineral extraction, deforestation, land-grabs and political corruption, or the Roma population of Europe who were victims of the Nazi holocaust and who continue to suffer terrible discrimination, we should remember them in our political discourse, cherish their cultural distinctiveness and speak out against those who abuse them.
When we do so we can be a force for good. I´m glad to report therefore that ahead of Roma Pride on Oct 1st the Czech government has announced they will end the scandal of the pig farm at Lety on the site of a Roma genocide. Meanwhile, the Xikrin have won an important injunction to halt the Onca Puma Mining Project and will receive full compensation for its poisonous effects.
My work with minorities and indigenous people on these issues would not be possible without a strong civil society and I am particularly grateful to UNPO and EGAM in this respect.
You can see me speaking in the chamber here -