London Irish LGBT Network are saddened and shocked to learn of the death of our friend and committee member, Ruairi McAleese. Ruairi had been very ill and died in hospital where he had been since August.
Ruairi became actively involved in our LGBT Network as soon as he joined three years ago; He immediately joined the committee. Ruairi used his legal and financial expertise to put our LGBT Network on a secure legal and financial basis. Ruairi was indispensable in keeping our network going.
Ruairi was a lawyer by qualification and training, at the time of death, he was a senior civil servant and government lawyer. Ruairi started his legal career as a specialist in complex social security case preparation.
He chose the area of legal practice that is the most poorly paid and at the same time contains the most complex law, and deals with some of society’s most vulnerable people. This demonstrated Ruairi’s commitment to social justice.
Ruairi’s commitment to social justice included his involvement in the LGBT Lawyers group and was their treasurer, he was also a Camden Labour Party activist. Before his death Ruairi volunteered for and was selected as a Magistrate.
The result of the UKs decision to leave the EU resulted in three years plus of intense negotiations which Ruairi as a government lawyer and senior civil servant played a key role.
The work was pressurised with long working hours and people in Ruairi’s position were often subjected to much abuse by the media.
So great was the pressure on civil servants like Ruairi’s that the senior civil servants’ trades union the First Division Association threatened action.
Ruairi will be very much missed. His great company at after meeting drinks in the pub and at social events will bring fond memories.
Our condolences and sympathies to his partner, Andy, and his family.