Julie has worked as a social worker and manager in South and West Glamorgan County Councils before becoming an Assistant Director at Barnardo’s. She was a councillor on South Glamorgan County Council until she was elected as MP for Cardiff North in 1997. During her time in Westminster Julie presented three private members’ bills – one on banning smoking in public places, one on granting votes at 16, and one on preventing under-18s from using sunbeds, which became law in 2010.  

Julie was elected as the Assembly Member for Cardiff North in 2011 and was a member of the Public Accounts Committee, the Finance Committee and the Environment Committee during the Fourth Assembly, as well as chairing seven cross-party groups covering areas such as children, cancer, and nursing and midwifery. In the Fifth Assembly, Julie was a member of the Health, Social Care and Sport Committee and the Children, Young People and Education Committee. On 13 May 2021 Julie was appointed Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services.