Philippa Stroud, Baroness Stroud
|Philippa Stroud, Baroness Stroud|
|Born||1965 (age 52–53)|
|Education||St Catherine's School, Bramley|
|Alma mater||University of Birmingham|
Philippa Claire Stroud, Baroness Stroud (born 1965) is a British think tanker. She is the chief executive officer of the Legatum Institute, and a co-founder and former executive director of the think tank the Centre for Social Justice. She is a member of the Conservative Party and in 2009 The Daily Telegraph named her as the 82nd most influential right-winger, ahead of the last Conservative leader Michael Howard. She was created a life peer on 1 October 2015 taking the title Baroness Stroud, of Fulham in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham.
Stroud spent seventeen years in poverty-fighting projects and published a book on social injustice. In 1987-89 she worked in Hong Kong and Macau amongst the addict community. From 1989-96 she pioneered a four-stage residential support project in Bedford enabling homeless people to move off the streets and to become contributing members of the community. From 2001-2003 Stroud developed a project to care for addicts, the homeless and those in debt in Birmingham.
House of Lords
Philippa Stroud was made a life peer in October 2015. In 2018 she has made speeches in the House of Lords on the topics of Human Trafficking, the European Union withdrawal bill and the Family Relationships bill. She has been an advocate of reducing poverty in the UK through her work at the Center for Social Justice, the Legatum Institute and in the House of Lords.
In February 2018 she made a speech in support of the Family Relationships (Impact Assessment and Targets) Bill which would help ensure future Government policy would be assessed for its impact on family relationships. She argued that the UK has “one of the highest rates of family breakdown in Europe” and that family breakdowns entrenched poverty. Stroud believes family relationships should be a priority for Government to help reduce poverty, with the highest poverty rate being attributed to single parent families.
In March 2018, Stroud made an appeal for the UK to accept more refugee children into the UK and to reunite more children with their families. Her speech garnered support from Lord Judd, Lord Tunnicliffe and Lord Hope who supported for her call for Britain to remain compassionate in its approach to accepting refugees.
After the 2010 General Election, Stroud was appointed as a Special Adviser to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, where she worked to help create and implement the Government’s welfare reforms. She returned to the Centre for Social Justice in 2015.
Stroud became the chief executive officer of the Legatum Institute in October 2016. Under her leadership, the think tank has promoted research and ideas demonstrating the opportunities and potential solutions for the UK’s trade policies post-Brexit. However, the Institute now focuses more broadly on the benefits of global trade through its Special Trade Commission.
In 2016, Stroud founded the Social Metrics Commission (SMC) with the aim to create a new UK poverty measure to replace the previous official measure abolished by the Conservative government in 2015. In September 2018 the SMC, led by Stroud, published a report using the new measure of poverty for the UK which went beyond the former official measure (which focused solely on income) by including core living costs such as housing, childcare and disability into the equation. The report found that 14.4 million people were living in poverty in 2017, including 4.5 million children. Stroud called on the Government to use this new measure to focus efforts and attention on creating policies and solutions to alleviate poverty levels in the UK.
Stroud has twice been a Conservative candidate in a general election: she came third in Birmingham Ladywood in 2005; and on 6 May 2010, as candidate for Sutton and Cheam, she came second to incumbent Liberal Democrat Paul Burstow.
During the 2010 election campaign, it was claimed by The Observer, but denied by Stroud, that in 1989, having returned from Hong Kong, she had founded the Kings Arms Trust in Bedford, that provided religiously-based social services to alcoholics and drug addicts. Twenty-one years later, the church attracted controversy when an article in The Observer of 2 May 2010 alleged they had tried to "cure" homosexuals and transgender individuals by driving out their 'demons' in the name of God. Immediately after the allegations of the article, Stroud responded in a statement saying that it was "categorically untrue that I believe homosexuality to be an 'illness'". David Cameron defended Stroud stating that "She believes in gay equality" and had made "a very clear statement to say she was completely misreported".
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