Dame Anne Begg was elected as the Labour MP for Aberdeen South in 1997. She has been a member of the Work and Pensions Select Committee for fourteen years and chaired it since 2010.
She was the first full-time wheelchair user to be elected to Parliament. In the 2011 New Year’s Honours List she was awarded a DBE for services to disabled people and equal opportunities.
Before entering Parliament Dame Anne was a secondary school teacher for 19 years. She was a secondary school English teacher at Webster’s High School in Kirriemuir then Head of Department at Arbroath Academy. Her commitment to education saw her actively involved in the teaching union and she was also an elected member of The General Teaching Council for Scotland.
Anne was born with the rare genetic condition Gauchers Disease which has resulted in her bones breaking regularly. She has used a wheelchair since 1984, the year after she joined the Labour Party and became active in local politics.
Regarding her wheelchair as her “liberator”, Anne has always believed that disabled people should not be excluded from society. She was a founder member of Angus Access Panel and campaigned for civil rights for disabled people. In 1988 Anne was voted Disabled Scot of the Year.