My Life Has Taken a New Path, Says the AM Who Is Giving It All Up for Humanism; David James
A SOUTH Wales AM has announced she will leave politics at the next election to become a "humanist celebrant".
Cardiff South and Penarth AM Lorraine Barrett has trained with the British Humanist Association to conduct non-religious weddings and funerals.
The 58-year-old Rhondda-born coal miner's daughter has been a Labour Assembly Member since the organisation was founded in 1999.
Before that, she was a nurse and a Vale of Glamorgan councillor, and worked as an assistant to Cardiff South and Penarth MP Alun Michael for 12 years.
Ms Barrett said she was planning to stand down at the next Assembly elections in 2011 but would be committed to her constituency work until then.
She said: "I have taken this decision because I trained last summer with the British Humanist Association as a humanist celebrant and I now conduct humanist or non-religious funeral ceremonies.
"It's going very well and I get huge satisfaction in being able to do something so special for families at the most difficult time of their lives.
"I want to develop my work as a celebrant to do baby-namings, weddings and civil partnerships.
"I also want to do more work with the British Humanist Association and the National Secular Society. It is for that reason that I have decided not to stand at the next election.
"I will be 61 at the time of the next election and will have beenamember of the Assembly for 12 years, and before being elected, I worked 12 years for Alun Michael MP - a total of 24 years working in, and for, our constituency. …