Open main menu

Stella Judith Creasy (born 5 April 1977)[6] 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.[7] She served in the frontbench teams of Ed Miliband and Harriet Harman from 2011 to 2015.

Dr Stella Creasy

Stella Creasy - MP - 2017.jpg
Official Parliamentary portrait of Stella Creasy, 2017
Shadow Minister for Business, Innovation and Skills
In office
8 October 2013 – 18 September 2015
LeaderEd Miliband
Harriet Harman (acting)
Shadow Sec.Chuka Umunna
Preceded byShabana Mahmood
Succeeded byChi Onwurah[1]
Shadow Minister for Crime Prevention[2]
In office
7 October 2011 – 8 October 2013
LeaderEd Miliband
Shadow Sec.Ed Balls
Yvette Cooper
Preceded byPosition created
Succeeded byJack Dromey[3]
Member of Parliament
for Walthamstow
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded byNeil Gerrard
Majority32,017 (66.5%)
Mayor of Waltham Forest
In office
May 2002 – May 2003[4][5]
Preceded byMuhammed Fazlur Rahman
Succeeded byRobert Belam
Personal details
Born
Stella Judith Creasy

(1977-04-05) 5 April 1977 (age 42)[6]
Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, England
Political partyLabour and Co-operative
EducationColchester County High School
Alma materUniversity of Cambridge
London School of Economics
ProfessionPolitician, psychologist
Websiteworkingforwalthamstow.org.uk

Early life and educationEdit

Creasy has connections to the Peerage, being from the family of John Prendergast-Smyth, 1st Viscount Gort, and the Cayzer baronets.[8] Creasy's mother has described her own background as "very aristocratic" and "enormously privileged".[9] Creasy was born in Sutton Coldfield,[9] 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.[9][10] Her elder brother, Matthew Henry Creasy (born 1974), is an academic.[11]

After spending her early childhood in Manchester, her family moved to Colchester where Creasy attended Colchester County High School for Girls, a grammar school.[9][10] Although she initially failed the eleven-plus exam, the Creasy family's move south gave her a second chance.[10] Creasy attended Magdalene College, Cambridge where she read Social and Political Sciences before pursuing postgraduate studies at the London School of Economics.[12] In the 1990s, towards the end of John Major's period as prime minister, Creasy was an intern at the Fabian Society.[13]

In 2006, having already started work as a parliamentary researcher, she completed her thesis entitled Understanding the lifeworld of social exclusion,[14] receiving a doctorate in Social Psychology from the London School of Economics.[12] Creasy received a Titmuss Prize in 2005 for her thesis.[15]

Early careerEdit

Creasy worked as a lobbyist and PR consultant, becoming head of Public Affairs at the Scout Association.[16]

She was deputy director of a think tank, Involve and worked as a researcher and speech writer for various Labour government ministers, including Douglas Alexander, Charles Clarke and Ross Cranston.[17][18] 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.[19]

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

Local governmentEdit

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.[17]

Parliamentary careerEdit

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.[20]

Creasy served on Labour's front bench team between October 2011 and September 2015.[21] In 2014, she was described as "one of the brightest lights of Labour's new generation" and as not being "the sort of politician to criticise her own leader".[22]

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

In the 2017 general election, her majority increased again, with a 12% increase in the share of the vote, making it the 13th safest seat.

Payday loansEdit

Creasy campaigned successfully 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] and was also acknowledged by the coalition government's Chancellor George Osborne for having contributed to the government's change of policy.[26]

In 2012, a Wonga employee used company equipment to make offensive personal attacks against Creasy.[27] 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.[27]

Twitter threats in 2013Edit

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),[10] Creasy received numerous rape threats and other misogynistic messages.[28]

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."[29] 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.[30][31] She criticised him for a previous tweet about an MP's breasts.[32] 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".[33] On 2 September 2014 at the City of London Magistrates' Court, Peter Nunn was found guilty of sending menacing messages to Creasy,[34] and was subsequently jailed for eighteen weeks.[35]

Labour Party leadershipEdit

Creasy supported David Miliband's bid for the Labour Party leadership in 2010.[22]

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.[36] Gaining the minimum 35 required nominees to be included on the ballot by noon on 17 June,[37] Creasy gained 26% of the vote and finished in second place, with Tom Watson being elected.

Creasy did not back any of the final four candidates in the leadership election.[38] She stated that she was prepared to work as a deputy to any of the candidates for the party leadership, including Jeremy Corbyn.[39] "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."[40] However, she is a vocal and prominent critic of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, stating that she has no confidence in him.[41] She supported Owen Smith in the failed attempt to replace Jeremy Corbyn in the 2016 Labour Party (UK) leadership election.[42]

Labour PartyEdit

Creasy regularly writes for Progress,[43] a movement of centre-left Labour party members and supporters.[44]

In late 2015, members of the Momentum group were accused of aiming to replace Creasy with someone closer to the Labour left.[45] A possibility that the seat might be redrawn after boundary changes meant that potential candidates were jockeying for position in the constituency party. Momentum denied this claim.[45] Creasy has criticised Momentum for being more interested in “meetings and moralising” than real campaigning.[46]

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.[47] 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.[48] Protesters had gathered outside the office the previous night urging a 'no' vote.[47][48] On Facebook, Creasy defended their right to peaceful protest.[49] Reports that protesters had gathered outside her home proved to be unfounded.[50][51]

In June 2019, she described the culture of the Labour movement as toxic.[52]

Issues relating to womenEdit

Creasy supported the No More Page 3 campaign to stop The Sun newspaper from publishing pictures of topless glamour models.[53][54]

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.[55] 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.[56][57] 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.[56][58] Creasy was cautious in her response to the development. "The devil will be in the detail", she said.[57] She was reported to have received threats from some anti-abortion activists.[59][60]

Additionally, Creasy criticised Corbyn for his call to decriminalise the sex industry.[61]

She has argued that misogyny should be made a hate crime.[62]

Personal lifeEdit

Creasy's partner has been named as Dan Fox, a former director of Labour Friends of Israel.[63] In June 2019, she announced she was pregnant, following numerous miscarriages.[64]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Jeremy Corbyn's full frontbench team unveiled". BBC. 18 September 2015.
  2. ^ Boffey, Daniel (11 August 2013). "Ed Miliband plans fourth reshuffle to shake up shadow cabinet". The Guardian.
  3. ^ "Diane Abbott axed as shadow health minister by Ed Miliband". BBC. 8 October 2013.
  4. ^ "The Mayor". Waltham Forest Council. Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  5. ^ "Walthamstow Memories - Walthamstow Mayors". www.walthamstowmemories.net.
  6. ^ 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
  7. ^ Election 2010– Walthamstow BBC News
  8. ^ "Stella Judith Creasy". The Peerage.
  9. ^ a b c d Coleman, John (5 July 2015). "Relative Values: Stella Creasy and her mum, Corinna". The Sunday Times. London. Retrieved 8 June 2019. CORINNA My parents came from a very aristocratic background, so it never occurred to them to be anything other than Tory. I grew up in Bushey in Hertfordshire and I went to a public school called St Margaret’s. At college, I realised how enormously privileged I was, so partly out of a sense of guilt, I joined the Labour party.
  10. ^ a b c d Addley, Esther (1 August 2013). "Stella Creasy: the MP who 'won't back down'". The Guardian.
  11. ^ "University of Glasgow - Schools - School of Critical Studies - Our staff - Dr Matthew Creasy". www.gla.ac.uk.
  12. ^ a b Day, Elizabeth (25 November 2012). "Stella Creasy: Labour's rising star who's taking on Wonga". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  13. ^ 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.
  14. ^ Creasy, Stella Judith (2006). Understanding the lifeworld of social exclusion. lse.ac.uk (PhD thesis). London School of Economics. doi:10.21953/lse.vwxamjarbb08. OCLC 500283354. EThOS uk.bl.ethos.429036.  
  15. ^ "20 under 40: Stella Creasy". New Statesman. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 2 February 2016.
  16. ^ David Singleton (11 May 2010). "Many lobbyists win seats but some see majority decreased". PR Week. Archived from the original on 21 March 2011.
  17. ^ a b "Members Of Parliament in Walthamstow".
  18. ^ "Stella Creasy – Biography".
  19. ^ Peev, Gerri (28 July 2009). ": Best be prepared for parliament's new platoon". The Scotsman. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  20. ^ Owen, Paul (3 August 2009). "The 32-year-old ex-mayor who hopes to bring activists and party together". The Guardian.
  21. ^ "Confirmed: Labour's new frontbench team in full | LabourList". LabourList | Labour's biggest independent grassroots e-network. 8 October 2013. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  22. ^ a b "Stella Creasy: Could the Wonga-baiting, indie-loving MP tweet her way". The Independent. 14 June 2014. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  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. ^ Murphy, Joe (25 November 2013). "Osborne rushes in law to cap payday loan rates". London Evening Standard. p. 2.
  27. ^ a b Mark King (21 November 2012). "Wonga apologises to Stella Creasy over abusive Twitter messages". Guardian newspapers. Retrieved 21 November 2012.
  28. ^ Emily Dugan "Pressure grows on Twitter to act on rape threats after Labour MP Stella Creasy calls in police", The Independent, 29 July 2013
  29. ^ Stella Creasy "Twitter's inadequate action over rape threats is itself an abuse", The Guardian, 27 July 2013
  30. ^ "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.
  31. ^ "Newsnight debate: What should be done about Twitter trolls?", BBC News, 31 July 2013
  32. ^ "'Stop Tweeting About Women's Tits'". The Huffington Post UK. Retrieved 17 March 2016.
  33. ^ Toby Young "Twitter abuse: Stella Creasy has overstepped the mark", telegraph.co.uk (blog), 31 July 2013
  34. ^ "Twitter 'troll sent rape threats to MP Stella Creasy'". 19 May 2014 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
  35. ^ "Man jailed for Twitter abuse of MP". BBC News. 29 September 2014. Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  36. ^ 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.
  37. ^ 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.
  38. ^ Addley, Esther (1 November 2015). "Stella Creasy: 'New politics? I'm still waiting for that to happen'". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  39. ^ Lewis, Helen (11 August 2015). "Stella Creasy rages against the political machine, but can she break it?". New Statesman. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  40. ^ 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.
  41. ^ Creasy, Stella (1 July 2016). "Labour is a party running on empty". New Statesman. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  42. ^ "Full list of MPs and MEPs backing challenger Owen Smith". LabourList. 21 July 2016. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
  43. ^ "Stella Creasy MP – Progress | Centre-left Labour politics". www.progressonline.org.uk. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  44. ^ "About". Progressonline.org.uk. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  45. ^ a b Bush, Stephen (2 December 2015). "Stella Creasy targeted for deselection". New Statesman. Retrieved 4 December 2015.
  46. ^ Mason, Rowena (24 March 2016). "Labour MP Stella Creasy attacks Momentum movement". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 July 2016.
  47. ^ 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.
  48. ^ 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.
  49. ^ McSmith, Andy (3 December 2015). "Why Stella Creasy has become prime target for deselection over Syria vote". The Independent. Retrieved 6 December 2015.
  50. ^ Greenslade, Roy (4 December 2015). "Stella Creasy crushes story about protest outside her house". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 December 2015.
  51. ^ "Today, Radio 4, 3 December 2015: Finding by the Editorial Complaints Unit". Editorial Complaints Unit. BBC. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  52. ^ "Stella Creasy: The culture of the Labour movement is toxic". Sky News. 19 June 2019. Retrieved 20 June 2019.
  53. ^ 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.
  54. ^ "We Speak To Labour MP Stella Creasy About Page 3: 'It's Never Been About Boobs'". The Debrief.
  55. ^ 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.
  56. ^ 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.
  57. ^ 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.
  58. ^ Creasy, Stella (23 June 2017). "Northern Irish women deserve equality. That's why I'm challenging abortion law". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 June 2017.
  59. ^ "Stella Creasy 'received Jo Cox-style death threat from anti-abortion activist'". Evening Standard. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  60. ^ "Anti-abortion activist tells Labour MP 'hopefully she will die like Jo Cox'". The Independent. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  61. ^ Watts, Joseph (8 March 2016). "Stella attacks Jeremy Corbyn for his call to decriminalise sex industry". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  62. ^ [1]
  63. ^ Milan (18 June 2019). "What has Stella Creasy said about her partner as the pregnant MP highlights Parliament maternity rights?". The Metro. Retrieved 20 June 2019. Text "first-Aidan" ignored (help)
  64. ^ Stella Creasy (17 June 2019). "I'm pregnant and forced to choose between being an MP and a mum". The Guardian.

External linksEdit