Joan Ryan

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The Right Honourable
Joan Ryan
Member of Parliament
for Enfield North
In office
1 May 1997 – 6 May 2010
Preceded by Timothy Eggar
Succeeded by Nick de Bois
Majority 1,920 (4.7%)
Personal details
Born (1955-09-08) 8 September 1955 (age 59)
Warrington
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Spouse(s) Martin Hegarty

Joan Marie Ryan (born 8 September 1955, Warrington) is a politician in the United Kingdom. She was member of Parliament for Enfield North between 1997 and 2010, and is a member of the Labour Party. She had previously been deputy leader of Barnet Council.[1]

Early life[edit]

Ryan went to St Joseph Secondary School and Notre Dame High School in the Warrington area. At the City of Liverpool College of Higher Education she gained a BA in history and sociology in 1979. In 1981, she gained an MSc in sociology from the Polytechnic of the South Bank. She worked as a teacher of Sociology and European Politics in Hammersmith. She worked as a freelance oral history interviewer for the Imperial War Museum for a period of three years in the mid-1980s.

Parliamentary career[edit]

Ryan served as a local Labour Councillor for eight years. She was Chair of Policy and Finance and deputy leader of Barnet Council before being elected as Member of Parliament for Enfield North in the 1997 general election.

Ryan was parliamentary private secretary to Andrew Smith, as well as a senior whip. From 5 May 2006 to 29 June 2007, Ryan was Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for nationality, citizenship and immigration at the Home Office, succeeding Andy Burnham. She had particular responsibility for ID cards and passports, the Forensic Science Service, refugee integration, E-borders, extradition and judicial cooperation, the Criminal Records Bureau, Home Office research and science, improving regulation, and design and green issues.

In the 2005 election she retained her seat with a slightly reduced majority.

Ryan's voting record includes support for the Iraq war and the introduction of ID cards.

Ryan supported Hazel Blears in the Labour party's 2007 deputy leadership election, Blears came sixth in the election. On 29 June, it was announced that the Prime Minister had appointed Ryan as Special Representative to Cyprus and as a Privy Counsellor.

She called for a leadership election to replace Gordon Brown as Labour Party leader.[2] For this she was fired as Vice Chair of the Labour Party and Prime Minister's envoy to Cyprus on 14 September 2008.[3]

In February 2010 she received the Friend of Ireland Award from the Labour Party Irish Society, for her working in supporting the Irish community in Britain.

Ryan was defeated by Conservative candidate Nick de Bois by 1,692 votes in the May 2010 General Election poll.[4]

Involvement in Expenses Scandal[edit]

In May 2009, it was reported that Ryan had claimed more than £4,500 under the Additional Costs Allowance for work on a house she had designated as her second home.[5] In February 2010, based on an audit report looking into the United Kingdom parliamentary expenses scandal, Ryan was asked to repay £5,121 mortgage interest.[6]

In 2012, The Independent reported that "[a]t least 10 attempts have been made from computers in Parliament to remove information about [Ryan's] expenses claims and a further 20 efforts to delete the information, some from her constituency of Enfield, have also been recorded in Wikipedia's logs. The sustained effort has proved successful and there is now no mention of Ms Ryan's Parliamentary expenses on her Wikipedia page."[7]

Personal life[edit]

As of May 2009 she lived in Enfield with her husband, Martin Hegarty, and children.[8] She has three grandchildren.[9]

After Parliament[edit]

After losing her seat, Ryan was appointed Chief Executive of the Global Tamil Forum, and later became deputy director of the successful NOtoAV campaign.[10]

Re-Selection as a Parliamentary Candidate[edit]

In March 2013, Ryan announced she was preparing to seek re-selection in the Enfield North constituency for the 2015 General Election. Her potential candidacy was met with displeasure from local activists[11] who questioned if Ryan's high-profile problems with expenses claims[12] may cause electoral problems.

While Labour were undergoing their selection process in the neighbouring constituency of Enfield Southgate, Ryan was accused of trying to influence the result.[13]

In June 2013, Ryan was re-selected as the Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the Enfield North constituency. However, her selection was not met with wide approval from within the local party - including the Chairman Viki Pite who said that she was "disappointed with the selection" as she felt a "fresh start" was needed.[14] Since Ryan's reselection several constituents have written to her local paper, the Enfield Advertiser, suggesting that voters have not yet forgotten the revelations about her expenses in 2009.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mp, Labour (17 October 2002). "Joan Ryan". BBC News. 
  2. ^ Gordon Brown faces Labour revolt and possible leadership contest, By Jason Beattie, Daily Mirror, 13/09/2008
  3. ^ Labour MP Joan Ryan sacked after open revolt against Gordon Brown, Daily Telegraph
  4. ^ BBC. "General election 2010 results – Enfield North". BBC News. Retrieved 7 May 2010. 
  5. ^ Leach, Ben; Jamieson, Alastair (17 May 2009). "Joan Ryan: expenses switch after £4,500 spend". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2 May 2012. 
  6. ^ Crerar, Pippa (4 February 2010). "London MPs will lose second homes cash in expenses payback". Evening Standard. Retrieved 2 May 2012. 
  7. ^ Pegg, David; Wright, Oliver (9 March 2012). "Who are the Commons moles changing Wikipedia entries?". The Independent (London). 
  8. ^ "Man acquitted of harassing Enfield North MP Joan Ryan on grounds of insanity". Enfield Independent (Newsquest Media Group). 10 March 2010. Retrieved 20 June 2010. 
  9. ^ "Election 2010: Joan Ryan, Labour Candidate for Enfield North". Enfield Independent (Newsquest Media Group). Retrieved 26 January 2011. 
  10. ^ Wilson, Peter (16 April 2011). "Referendum puts Nick Clegg in the crosshairs". The Australian. 
  11. ^ Fawkes, Guido (8 March 2013). "Labour Expenses Piggy Tries To Run Again". Guido Fawkes Blog. 
  12. ^ Leach, Ben (17 May 2009). "Joan Ryan: expenses switch after £4,500 spend". The Telegraph. 
  13. ^ Couvee, Koos (5 June 2013). "Former MP Joan Ryan accused of trying to influence elections at Labour AGM". The Enfield Advertiser. 
  14. ^ Couvee, Koos (24 June 2013). "Joan Ryan wins Labour Backing". The Enfield Advertiser. 
  15. ^ Mason, Rowena (24 June 2013). "Labour reselect Joan Ryan, former MP criticised over expenses". The Daily Telegraph. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Tim Eggar
Member of Parliament for Enfield North
19972010
Succeeded by
Nick de Bois