TOP 10 - PUBLIC SERVICE OR CAMPAIGNER
Begum first entered parliament as the Labour MP for Poplar and Limehouse in 2019, standing as Parliament’s first hijab-wearing MP. She has long held diversity and inclusion as a priority, even before serving as an MP. Prior to this, she was Equality and Diversity Officer for Queen Mary University of London from 2016 to 2018. Upon her election, Begum spoke out about her experiences of Islamophobia, which she has faced throughout her political career.
BARONNESS SAYEEDA WARSI
Lawyer and politician Baroness Warsi was first appointed as a life peer in 2017, making her the youngest member of the House of Lords at the time. Previously, Warsi served as Shadow Minister for Community Cohesion and Social Action. She became the first Muslim to attend Cabinet (but not as a formal member), and previously stood as Vice Chair for the Conservative Party.
HUMZA YOUSAF MSP
Scottish politician Humza Yousaf has been serving as an MP for various Glasgow constituencies since 2011. In 2018, Yousaf was appointed Cabinet Secretary for Justice, where he worked to introduce bills to protect persecuted minorities, and was outspoken in the wake of George Floyd about the lack of Black, Asian and minority ethnic people in power in Scotland.
Van-Tam is a British healthcare professional, specialising in influenza and vaccination, who played a significant role in the UK’s response to Covid as deputy chief medical officer for England. After his extensive work in service of the UK during the pandemic, Van-Tam was knighted in 2022. He has since stepped down from that position in order to pursue an academic role.
LORD SIMON WOOLLEY
Lord Woolley is a political and equality activist, best known as the director and one of the founders of Operation Black Vote. Woolley is seen as one of the inspirations and architects for the UK government’s Race Disparity Unity and serves as Advisory Chair. As well as his work and commitment to race and equality, he is an accomplished journalist, writing for The Guardian, Huffington Post, and The Independent.
MUNIRA WILSON MP
Liberal Democrat MP Munira Wilson has been serving as the spokesperson for education since 2021, using her political platform to campaign against violence, advocate for mental health services and speak out on behalf of refugee rights. Her mother fled her homeland of Zanzibar during the revolution, becoming stateless. Wilson stated that, ‘I couldn’t have become an MP without their hard work and I don’t see why I should turn around and deny that opportunity to other people who want to come and do that.’
TAIWO OWATEMI MP
Owatemi has been the Labour MP for Coventry North West since 2019. Prior to her re-election, she worked for the NHS as a senior pharmacist and during the pandemic went back to work on the front line to help in the battle against the virus. In Parliament, she is the co-chair of the All-Parliamentary Group on Knife Crime, which she is passionate about ending. She also sits on the Health and Social Care Select Committee.
TANMANJEET SINGH DHESI MP
Dhesi is the Labour MP for Slough and has been Shadow Minister for the Railways since 2020. He became Britain’s first turbaned Sikh MP in the 2017 general election, and is the son of Jaspal Singh Dhesi, the former president of Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara, the largest gurdwara, a place of assembly and worship, in the UK.
Community and human rights campaigner Zita Holbourne FRSA has utilised her artwork to help campaign for equality and justice, as well as against climate change. Holbourne is a founding member of Movement Against Xenophobia, BME Lawyers for Grenfell and BAME Lawyers for Justice. Her work has seen her take a leading role against the Windrush scandal, organising petitions against the Home Office to end mass deportations to Jamaica.