|Minister for Health of Latvia|
23 January 2019 – 7 January 2021
|Prime Minister||Arturs Krišjānis Kariņš|
|Preceded by||Anda Čakša|
|Succeeded by||Daniels Pavļuts|
|Minister for Welfare of Latvia|
25 October 2011 – 22 January 2014
|Prime Minister||Valdis Dombrovskis|
|Preceded by||Ilona Jurševska|
|Succeeded by||Uldis Augulis|
|Born||27 November 1971|
Rēzekne, Latvian SSR
|Political party||Movement For!|
Civic Union (2008–2011)
TB/LNNK (Until 2008)
|Alma mater||Riga Stradiņš University|
|Profession||Journalist, Social worker|
Ilze Viņķele (born 27 November 1971 in Rēzekne) is a Latvian politician, and the former Minister for Welfare and Minister for Health of Latvia. Currently she is a member of the political party Movement For!, a part of the Development/For! alliance.
On November 7, 2006, Ilze Viņķele became the Secretary of Parliament of the Special Assignments Ministry for European Union Funds of Latvia. In 2010 she was elected as a member of the 10th Saeima, however, she became the Secretary of Parliament of the Ministry for Finance of Latvia. Viņķele was appointed Minister for Welfare of Latvia on October 25, 2011. On September, 2012, 54 non-governmental organizations sent a joint letter demanding the resignation of Viņķele over two kindergarten booklets "The Day when Ruth was Richard" and "The Day when Karl was Caroline" whose publishing and distribution the ministry supported.
On July 17, 2017, Viņķele and 4 other MPs (Ints Dālderis, Lolita Čigāne, Andrejs Judins and Aleksejs Loskutovs) left Unity, however she continued to work in the party's parliamentary faction. On August 26, 2017, Viņķele became one of the founders for the political party Movement For! and was elected as its board member. On August 29, 2017, Viņķele stepped down as a member of Saeima, being selected to study at the McCain Institute at the University of Arizona as one of the eight beneficiaries.
On January 5, 2021, Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš announced that he would be demanding the resignation of Viņķele as Health Minister due to disagreements over her proposed plan for the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine in Latvia. On the same day, she accepted the demand, and stepped down on January 7, 2021, with party colleague Daniels Pavļuts being confirmed to succeed her the same day.
- "Saeima izsaka uzticību Dombrovska trešajai valdībai" (in Latvian). Delfi. 25 October 2011. Retrieved November 25, 2011.
- Petrova, Alla (September 26, 2012). "54 NGOs demand Latvian Welfare Minister Vinkele's resignation". The Baltic Course. Retrieved August 4, 2018.
- Ģelzis, Ģederts (October 31, 2012). "Latvian children's book sparks controversy". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved August 4, 2018.
- "Five MPs leave Unity party". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. July 18, 2017. Retrieved August 4, 2018.
- "New Latvian political party off the ground". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. August 28, 2017. Retrieved August 4, 2018.
- "MP Ilze Viņķele to step down to study in US". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. August 29, 2017. Retrieved August 4, 2018.
- "Health Minister to be dismissed over vaccine plan differences". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. January 5, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
- "Viņķele akceptē demisijas pieprasījumu". TV Net, LETA (in Latvian). TV Net. January 5, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
- "Pavļuts confirmed as new Health Minister". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. January 7, 2021. Retrieved January 7, 2021.