Adrian Hyyrylainen-Trett, the prospective parliamentary candidate for the Liberal Democrats in Vauxhall, revealed he was HIV positive in a frank interview with Buzzfeed.
In the interview with Patrick Strudwick, Hyyrylainent-Trett talked about his troubled time at school where he contemplated suicide:
‘I tried to throw myself out of the window a couple of times … On both occasions my father interrupted me doing it, not realising what he’d interrupted. I was just out of the window, and he came up and wondered what on earth I was doing on the sill.’
The interview went on to describe the now 36-year old’s growth to adulthood and his discovery of a darker side to the gay scene. After, experimenting with unsafe sex and intravenous drug use, Hyyrylainent-Trett was eventually diagnosed as HIV positive.
The parliamentary candidate went on to discuss how attitudes towards HIV in Britain need to be improved at every level.
‘We need much more education in schools and the workplace around HIV, to reduce stigma, but more than that: there used to be television campaigns about it, but there hasn’t been anything in recent years. Young people are often completely unaware because of a lack of education.’
He closed his interview with a piece of advice for any gay child feeling like they are being bullied today:
‘Try and talk to someone … Be strong and be brave.’
Should Hyyrylainen-Trett be successful in his campaign, he will become MP for Vauxhall following the general election in May. He is also the first UK parliamentary candidate to publicly disclose that he is HIV positive.
The last Member of Parliament to disclose this was Chris Smith, who announced his status in 2005 to The Sunday Times after being diagnosed with the condition in 1987.
You can see the original interview in full on Buzzfeed, and you can learn more about Adrian Hyyrylainen-Trett on his Liberal Democrats webpage.