Stella Creasy

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Stella Creasy
MP
Stella Creasy - MP - 2017.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Walthamstow
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded by Neil Gerrard
Majority 32,017 (66.5%)
Mayor of Waltham Forest
In office
2002–2003
Preceded by Muhammed Fazlur Rahman[1]
Succeeded by Robert Belam
Personal details
Born Stella Judith Creasy
(1977-04-05) 5 April 1977 (age 41)[2]
Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, England
Political party Labour and Co-operative
Alma mater Magdalene College, Cambridge
London School of Economics
Website Official website

Stella Judith Creasy (born 5 April 1977)[2] is a British Labour and Co-operative politician, who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for the London constituency of Walthamstow since the 2010 general election.[3]

Early life and career[edit]

Creasy was born in Sutton Coldfield,[4] and is the daughter of Corinna Frances Avril (née Martin) and Philip Charles Creasy, both active Labour Party members; her father is a trained opera singer and her mother a headteacher of a special needs school.[4][5] Her elder brother, Matthew Henry Creasy (born 1974), is an academic.[6] She is the four times great-granddaughter of Charles Vereker, 2nd Viscount Gort[7] and three times great granddaughter of Sir Charles Cayzer, 1st Baronet both on her maternal side[8] making her the second cousin, twice removed of Robin Cayzer, 3rd Baron Rotherwick.[9]

After spending her early childhood in Manchester, her family moved to Colchester where Creasy attended Colchester County High School for Girls, a grammar school.[4][5] Although she initially failed the eleven-plus exam, the Creasy family's move south gave her a second chance.[5] Creasy attended Magdalene College, Cambridge where she read Social and Political Sciences before pursuing postgraduate studies at London School of Economics.[10] In the 1990s, towards the end of John Major's period as prime minister, Creasy was an intern at the Fabian Society.[11]

In 2006, having already started work as a parliamentary researcher, she completed her thesis entitled Understanding the lifeworld of social exclusion, receiving a doctorate in Social Psychology from the London School of Economics.[10] Creasy received a Titmuss Prize in 2005 for her thesis.[12]

Early career[edit]

Creasy worked as a lobbyist and PR consultant, becoming head of Public Affairs at the Scout Association.[13]

A former deputy director of a think tank, Involve, she worked as a researcher and speech writer for various Labour government ministers, including Douglas Alexander, Charles Clarke and Ross Cranston.[14][15] In an article in The Scotsman in 2009, Creasy was placed among the prospective parliamentary candidates from all the main parties as a politician to watch after the next general election.[16]

Creasy was a member of the Young Fabians and served on its executive.[citation needed]

Local Government[edit]

Elected as a councillor in Waltham Forest, Creasy later became the borough's deputy mayor before serving as mayor for four months prior to her election to the House of Commons.[14]

In Parliament[edit]

After the retirement of Labour MP, Neil Gerrard, Creasy was selected from an all-female shortlist as the party's candidate for Walthamstow, and was elected to Parliament at the 2010 general election.[17]

Creasy supported David Miliband's bid for the Labour Party leadership in 2010.[18]

As "one of the brightest lights of Labour's new generation", Creasy served on Labour's Business, Innovation & Skills front bench team[19] - being described as not being "the sort of politician to criticise her own leader".[20] However, she is now a vocal and prominent critic of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, stating that she has no confidence in him.[21]

Creasy regularly writes for Progress[22] a Labour Party organisation which is "not supportive of" Corbyn's leadership and up until 2014 stated it was "the New Labour pressure group which aims to promote a radical and progressive politics for the 21st century."

Payday loans[edit]

Creasy has campaigned for better regulation of payday loans companies.[23] In an article published by The Guardian, she stated that just six companies controlled lending to 90% of the seven million Britons without a bank account or credit card. Her disclosure that the average cost of credit charged to these customers was 272% APR, as in the rest of Europe, and that there was a fourfold increase in payday loans since the start of the recession in 2008 led to cross-party parliamentary support for a cap.[23] Creasy also highlighted in a speech to the House of Commons the lack of competition in the market, leading to Government support for a cap of loans which exploit the poor, which in some cases reached 4000%. APR.[24] Creasy won The Spectator magazine's Campaigner of the Year prize in their Parliamentarian of the Year awards in 2011 for her work on the issue.[25]

In 2012, a Wonga employee used company equipment to make offensive personal attacks against Creasy.[26] Wonga made an "immediate and unreserved apology" following these malicious attacks, and Creasy also managed to get the firm to promote one of her constituency events in aid of struggling families.[26]

Twitter threats in 2013[edit]

At the end of July 2013 on her Twitter timeline, along with the feminist campaigner Caroline Criado Perez (who had lobbied the Bank of England to put a woman on the £10 note),[5] Creasy received numerous rape threats and other misogynistic messages.[27]

Creasy wrote in an article published on 27 July: "Twitter tell me we should simply block those who 'offend us', as though a rape threat is matter of bad manners, not criminal behaviour."[28] She also appeared on Newsnight on 30 July 2013 with Toby Young, the Conservative commentator, over the validity of addressing harassment on the social networking site.[29][30] She criticised him for a previous tweet about an MP's breasts.[31] Young has objected to Twitter's subsequent change in policy, writing that the company, "shouldn't change its abuse policy in response to being brow-beaten by a politician".[32] On 2 September 2014 at the City of London Magistrates' Court, Peter Nunn was found guilty of sending menacing messages to Creasy,[33] and was subsequently jailed for eighteen weeks.[34]

Creasy supported the No More Page 3 campaign to stop The Sun newspaper from publishing pictures of topless glamour models.[35][36]

Labour Party deputy leadership[edit]

Creasy was re-elected in 2015 with a substantially increased majority, securing a 17% increase in the share of the vote.

Following the Labour Party's defeat at the 2015 general election, Creasy announced her intention to stand as a candidate in the Labour Party deputy leadership election.[37] Gaining the minimum 35 required nominees to be included on the ballot by noon on 17 June,[38] Creasy did not back any of the final four candidates in the leadership election.[39] She was prepared to work as a deputy to any of the candidates for the party leadership, including Jeremy Corbyn.[40] "Of course I would", she told Carol Midgley in a Times interview in August 2015, "because that process of rebuilding isn’t about any one person it's about all of us. It's written on the back of our membership card that we achieve more together than we do alone."[41]

Creasy gained 26% of the vote and finished in second place, with Tom Watson being elected.

Momentum, Syria and Corbyn[edit]

An accusation was made in late-2015 that members of the Momentum group were aiming to replace Creasy with someone closer to the Labour left.[42] A possibility that the seat might be redrawn after boundary changes means potential candidates are jockeying for position in the constituency party. Momentum have denied this claim.[42] Creasy has criticised Momentum.[43]

Creasy allegedly received threats via social media following her vote for extending UK military action against ISIS to Syria after the parliamentary debate on 2 December 2015.[44] Creasy was undecided until the day of the vote, while staff in her Walthamstow constituency office had to deal with what they referred to as harassing telephone calls.[45] Protesters had gathered outside the office the previous night urging a 'no' vote.[44][45] On Facebook, Creasy defended their right to peaceful protest.[46] Reports that protesters had gathered outside her home proved to be unfounded.[47][48]

Creasy is a critic of Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and has stated she has no confidence in him.[21] Additionally, Creasy criticised Corbyn for his call to decriminalise the sex industry.[49]

Abortion law in Northern Ireland[edit]

Abortion law in Northern Ireland is more restrictive compared to the rest of the United Kingdom, resulting in many women travelling from Northern Ireland to Great Britain to access abortion services.

In 2017, a potential amendment to the Queen's Speech, organised by Creasy, calling for the Government to allocate adequate funding for women who are forced to travel to England to have an abortion, gained cross-party support and was ultimately signed by 100 MPs threatening a government defeat.[50] Conservative MP Peter Bottomley was a co-signer of Creasy's amendment. In answer to a question from Bottomley in the Commons on 29 June 2017, Philip Hammond, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said the government would support free abortions on the mainland for Northern Irish women.[51][52]

Earlier in June, a Supreme Court ruling upheld the legal basis for a charge of £900 for women from the province seeking an abortion on the mainland, whereas other necessary treatments on the NHS would have been free.[51][53] Creasy was cautious in her response to the development. "The devil will be in the detail", she said.[52] She was reported to have received threats from some anti-abortion activists.[54][55]

Fighting crime[edit]

Creasy said over the rising levels of crime in London, “They’re not wrong to say it’s not just about police numbers, it’s about what they do next. But everybody knows that resources would help.”[56] She has argued that misogyny should be made a hate crime.[57]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Walthamstow Memories - Walthamstow Mayors". www.walthamstowmemories.net. 
  2. ^ a b Some sources suggest Creasy was born on 1 January 1977. Her father, in a letter to The Guardian, confirmed that 5 April is the correct date. See "Brief Letters: Plaque Russians", The Guardian, 8 January 2013
  3. ^ Election 2010– Walthamstow BBC News
  4. ^ a b c Coleman, John (5 July 2015). "Relative Values: Stella Creasy and her mum, Corinna". The Sunday Times. London. Retrieved 6 December 2015. (Subscription required (help)). 
  5. ^ a b c d Addley, Esther (1 August 2013). "Stella Creasy: the MP who 'won't back down'". The Guardian. 
  6. ^ "University of Glasgow - Schools - School of Critical Studies - Our staff - Dr Matthew Creasy". www.gla.ac.uk. 
  7. ^ "John Prendergast Vereker, 3rd Viscount Gort - Person Page". The Peerage. 10 May 2013. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  8. ^ "Sir Charles Cayzer, 1st Baronet - Person Page". The Peerage. 15 February 2011. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  9. ^ "Robin Cayzer, 3rd Baron Rotherwick - Person Page". The Peerage. 28 August 2016. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  10. ^ a b Day, Elizabeth (25 November 2012). "Stella Creasy: Labour's rising star who's taking on Wonga". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  11. ^ Bland, Archie (13 June 2014). "Stella Creasy: Could the Wonga-baiting, indie-loving MP tweet her way to No 10?". The Independent. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  12. ^ "20 under 40: Stella Creasy". New Statesman. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 2 February 2016. 
  13. ^ David Singleton (11 May 2010). "Many lobbyists win seats but some see majority decreased". PR Week. Archived from the original on 21 March 2011. 
  14. ^ a b "Members Of Parliament in Walthamstow". 
  15. ^ "Stella Creasy – Biography". 
  16. ^ Peev, Gerri (28 July 2009). ": Best be prepared for parliament's new platoon". The Scotsman. Retrieved 28 May 2018. 
  17. ^ Owen, Paul (3 August 2009). "The 32-year-old ex-mayor who hopes to bring activists and party together". The Guardian. 
  18. ^ "Stella Creasy: Could the Wonga-baiting, indie-loving MP tweet her way". The Independent. 2014-06-14. Retrieved 2018-05-28. 
  19. ^ "Confirmed: Labour's new frontbench team in full | LabourList". LabourList | Labour's biggest independent grassroots e-network. 2013-10-08. Retrieved 2018-05-28. 
  20. ^ "Stella Creasy: Could the Wonga-baiting, indie-loving MP tweet her way". The Independent. 2014-06-14. Retrieved 2018-05-28. 
  21. ^ a b Creasy, Stella (1 July 2016). "Labour is a party running on empty". New Statesman. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  22. ^ "Stella Creasy MP – Progress | Centre-left Labour politics". www.progressonline.org.uk. Retrieved 2018-05-28. 
  23. ^ a b Creasy, Stella (3 February 2011). "Legal loan sharks are circling the poor". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 September 2012. 
  24. ^ "MP urges government crack-down on legal loan sharks". BBC News. 3 February 2011. Retrieved 25 September 2012. 
  25. ^ Forsyth, James (26 November 2011). "Labour's new golden girl". The Spectator. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  26. ^ a b Mark King (21 November 2012). "Wonga apologises to Stella Creasy over abusive Twitter messages". Guardian newspapers. Retrieved 21 November 2012. 
  27. ^ Emily Dugan "Pressure grows on Twitter to act on rape threats after Labour MP Stella Creasy calls in police", The Independent, 29 July 2013
  28. ^ Stella Creasy "Twitter's inadequate action over rape threats is itself an abuse", The Guardian, 27 July 2013
  29. ^ "Stella Creasy Shames Toby Young For Breasts Tweet In Newsnight Twitter Debate", The Huffington Post, 31 July 2013. See Esler's tweet confirming it was on the 30 July edition.
  30. ^ "Newsnight debate: What should be done about Twitter trolls?", BBC News, 31 July 2013
  31. ^ "'Stop Tweeting About Women's Tits'". The Huffington Post UK. Retrieved 2016-03-17. 
  32. ^ Toby Young "Twitter abuse: Stella Creasy has overstepped the mark", telegraph.co.uk (blog), 31 July 2013
  33. ^ "Twitter 'troll sent rape threats to MP Stella Creasy'". 19 May 2014 – via www.bbc.co.uk. 
  34. ^ "Man jailed for Twitter abuse of MP". BBC News. 29 September 2014. Retrieved 29 September 2014. 
  35. ^ Orr, Deborah; Creasy, Stella; Bindel, Julie; Short, Clare; Bates, Laura; Bidisha; Toynbee, Polly; Khaleeli, Homa; Whitehorn, Katharine; Sladden, Katherine (20 January 2015). "Is the Sun's scrapping of Page 3 topless models a victory for women?" – via The Guardian. 
  36. ^ "We Speak To Labour MP Stella Creasy About Page 3: 'It's Never Been About Boobs'". The Debrief. 
  37. ^ Bush, Stephen (16 May 2015). "Stella Creasy announces she will stand for the deputy leadership of the Labour party". New Statesman. Retrieved 30 July 2015. 
  38. ^ Dathan, Matt (17 June 2015). "Stella Creasy scrapes through as five make it onto the ballot for deputy Labour leadership election". The Independent. Retrieved 30 July 2015. 
  39. ^ Addley, Esther (1 November 2015). "Stella Creasy: 'New politics? I'm still waiting for that to happen'". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  40. ^ Lewis, Helen (11 August 2015). "Stella Creasy rages against the political machine, but can she break it?". New Statesman. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  41. ^ Midgley, Carol (22 August 2015). "'It's not a question of left or right — Labour's challenge is to be relevant'". The Times. London. Retrieved 11 September 2016. (Subscription required (help)). 
  42. ^ a b Bush, Stephen (2 December 2015). "Stella Creasy targeted for deselection". New Statesman. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  43. ^ Mason, Rowena (24 March 2016). "Labour MP Stella Creasy attacks Momentum movement". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 July 2016. 
  44. ^ a b Butter, Susannah (3 December 2015). "The battle for Stella Creasy's streets: how the bombing of Syria is causing a growing divide in Walthamstow". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  45. ^ a b Marshall, Tom (5 December 2015). "Stella Creasy defends anti-war protesters who marched on her Walthamstow office". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 6 December 2015. 
  46. ^ McSmith, Andy (3 December 2015). "Why Stella Creasy has become prime target for deselection over Syria vote". The Independent. Retrieved 6 December 2015. 
  47. ^ Greenslade, Roy (4 December 2015). "Stella Creasy crushes story about protest outside her house". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  48. ^ "Today, Radio 4, 3 December 2015: Finding by the Editorial Complaints Unit". Editorial Complaints Unit. BBC. Retrieved 13 September 2016. 
  49. ^ Watts, Joseph (8 March 2016). "Stella Creasy attacks Jeremy Corbyn for call to decriminalise sex industry". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  50. ^ Merrick, Rob (29 June 2017). "Theresa May scrambles to avoid a defeat on abortion charges for Northern Irish women forced to travel to Britain". The Independent. Retrieved 29 June 2017. 
  51. ^ a b Elgot, Jessica; McDonald, Henry (29 June 2017). "Government to give Northern Irish women access to free abortions". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 June 2017. 
  52. ^ a b Hughes, Laura (29 June 2017). "Philip Hammond announces NI women will be given free abortions in England". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 29 June 2017. 
  53. ^ Creasy, Stella (23 June 2017). "Northern Irish women deserve equality. That's why I'm challenging abortion law". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 June 2017. 
  54. ^ "Stella Creasy 'received Jo Cox-style death threat from anti-abortion activist'". Evening Standard. Retrieved 2018-06-11. 
  55. ^ "Anti-abortion activist tells Labour MP 'hopefully she will die like Jo Cox'". The Independent. Retrieved 2018-06-11. 
  56. ^ Sadiq Khan holds City Hall summit on how to tackle violent crime The Guardian
  57. ^ [1]

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Neil Gerrard
Member of Parliament
for Walthamstow

2010–present
Incumbent