Head and shoulders colour photograph of Julie Newman, shot against a blue sky.

About Julie Newman

Julie Newman was born in south London, but spent most of her childhood and adolescence in North America, first in the Maritime provinces of Canada and then in the southern US States of Carolina and Virginia.

On her return to the UK Julie trained and worked as a nurse, before returning to education as a mature student to take a BA in Social Psychology at the University of Sussex. She went on to gain a post-graduate diploma in counselling and interpersonal behaviour, with additional qualifications as a trainer.

Julie worked in Brighton as an adult education lecturer before moving to south London where she worked for Lambeth Council, first as a community mental health worker and then as a Disability Equality Officer. Following early retirement from the public sector, Julie now works as an artist and documenter specialising in photography, video and sound, and has a studio at Trinity Buoy Wharf in London's Docklands.

Julie's personal experience of disability began when, as a teenager, she was institutionalised in Virginia. Julie was later institutionalised again as a young adult in the UK, and following this experienced periods of street homelessness. A spinal injury as a nurse, and a later bout of ME, means that Julie now uses a wheelchair to maximise her mobility.

Julie has been well-known as an equality campaigner since the 1980s. She was one of the first nationally elected disabled lesbians within the trade union movement, working across the fields of disability, sexuality and gender.

At a local level, Julie was closely involved with the Brighton Rape Crisis Centre in the 1980s, and with Lambeth SHAD and Lambeth CIL in the 1990s. In 1999 she led the Lambeth CIL occupation, where disabled people occupied their Centre for Independent Living for four months, running the services themselves after the local authority withdrew the funding. Julie now lives in East London, where she is involved in a number of local consultative and campaign groups.

At a national level, Julie has been Acting Chair of the UK Disabled People's Council since 2007, and represents UKDPC on a range of other committees and forums. Julie is also a trustee of Regard, the national LGBT disabled people's organisation, and is a member of a number of committees and consultative groups linked to London 2012.

In her 'spare' time, Julie is a keen collector, sailor and gardener. She has been with her partner, the artist and activist Dr Ju Gosling aka ju90, since 2000.

Colour photograph of Julie and Ju holding hands on the Millennium Bridge

Email Julie on julienewman47@googlemail.com