|Constituency||Cardiff South and Penarth.|
for Labour and Co-operative Party
6 May 1999
18 March 1950 |
Ynyshir, Rhondda, Wales
Barrett was born in Ynyshir, Rhondda to Rosina and Donald Booth, a retired coalminer, and went to Porth County School for Girls. She married Paul "Legs" Barrett, the well known manager of rock and roll acts, in 1972 and has a son, Lincoln Barrett, also known as drum and bass DJ High Contrast and a daughter called Shelley, who has appeared in many television programmes.
She was a nurse and a Councillor in the Vale of Glamorgan and Penarth Town Council and worked as an assistant to the current Cardiff South and Penarth Member of Parliament, Alun Michael from 1987-99. She was a member of the Welsh Labour executive and the National Policy Forum.
Barrett is a member of the Transport & General Workers Union and chairs the Co-operative Party Group and the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Animal Welfare within the Assembly. She is an Honorary Associate of the National Secular Society.
Welsh Assembly Commissioner
Barrett in her new capacity as Assembly Commissioner for a Sustainable Environment was involved in a 2007 row over genetically modified foods in the Welsh Assembly Canteen. The Assembly had earlier signed a document committing to "maximum restrictions on GM crops" when it later became apparent that the Assembly canteen was serving items containing GM ingredients. The canteen organizers commented "Some of our food contains ingredients produced from genetically modified soya and/or maize. If you want to know which ones please ask the staff for details." Barrett later explained "We have discussed this with our in-house caterers, Charlton House. They do not deliberately source GM foods and in fact make every effort to avoid using GM products. However, some items in everyday use, such as baked beans, tinned tomatoes and tomato ketchup are known to contain GM ingredients." 
Barrett has remained critical of the planned Cardiff Bay expansion of "something like 1,250 apartments a year".  Barrett suggests this might cause future problems as currently, in 2008, up to one third already built are still not occupied. Barrett asserts that the flat complexes will not help to build up a cohesive community and too little attention has been paid to develop affordable housing. With the recent dramatic falls in property values, sales in the area have become problematic. Therefore landlords might be forced to consider renting their properties out to "people who may not be suited to that type of living."
Barrett has been active in pressing for the Cardiff Bay Barrage to be opened up for pedestrian and cycle traffic. The provision will permit many Penarth residents who work in the Bay area to dispense with car travel and reduce traffic congestion on the existing routes.
|National Assembly for Wales|
|Assembly Member for Cardiff South and Penarth