Nadia Whittome

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Nadia Whittome

Official portrait of Nadia Whittome MP crop 2.jpg
Whittome in 2019
Member of Parliament for Nottingham East
Assumed office
12 December 2019
Preceded byChris Leslie
Majority17,393 (43.4%)
Personal details
BornNottingham, England
NationalityBritish
Political partyLabour
Websitenadiawhittome.org

Nadia Edith Whittome[1] (born 1996) is a British Labour Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Nottingham East since the 2019 general election. At the age of 23, she was the youngest MP elected in the general election and therefore became the Baby of the House.

Early life[edit]

Whittome was born in Nottingham, England, into a working-class family.[2] Her Punjabi Sikh father emigrated to the UK from Banga, India at the age of 21. He has worked a variety of jobs including as an immigration advisor, factory worker, miner, and a driving instructor.[3] Her mother is an Anglo-Indian Catholic solicitor whose parents emigrated from Calcutta in the 1950s. She was formerly a member of the Labour Party, who left the party in protest at the amendment of Clause IV of the constitution in 1995.[4] Whittome has a brother who works as a bricklayer in Sydney.[3] Her grandparents belonged to the Communist Party of India.[4] She grew up in a single-parent household.[5][6] Whittome reports that she attended a private school between the ages of 7 and 11.[7] She later attended West Bridgford School, a local comprehensive.[8] Whittome has lived in the Meadows, Top Valley, and West Bridgford.[9]

She has commented in interviews that she first got involved in politics in 2013 due to the effects of the bedroom tax and austerity on her local community.[5][10] Whittome worked as a parliamentary intern in the constituency office of the Member of Parliament (MP) for North West Durham Pat Glass, Shadow Minister of State for Europe, during the 2016 European Union referendum campaign. Glass stood down at the 2017 general election.[11][12] She studied law at Nottingham University after attending an access course at Nottingham College.[13] While studying there, she contested the 2017 Nottinghamshire County Council election as the Labour candidate for the West Bridgford West ward, where she finished second to the Conservative candidate with 1,393 votes.[1][8] Whittome later dropped out of university due to financial reasons, and worked as a hate crime project worker at Communities Inc, and as a carer.[4][3][14]

Prior to her election, she was a national committee member of the pro-Remain organisations Another Europe is Possible and Labour for a Socialist Europe.[15][16][17]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Whittome was selected as the Labour Party candidate for Nottingham East on 28 October 2019.[13] She was elected as the MP for the constituency in the December general election with a majority of 17,393 (43.4%).[18] At the age of 23, she was the youngest MP elected in the general election, and therefore gained the unofficial title of Baby of the House.[5][19] The seat has been held by the Labour Party since the 1992 general election, and had previously been represented by Chris Leslie who himself is a former Baby of the House.[6][20][a] Whittome is of Punjabi descent, and was also the first BAME MP elected in Nottingham.[21]

Shortly after her election, she announced that she would only be keeping the equivalent of "an average worker's wage", as determined by the Office for National Statistics, of £35,000, and would donate the remainder of her £79,468 salary as an MP to local charities.[5][6] Whittome initially supported Clive Lewis in the 2020 Labour Party leadership election but after Lewis withdrew his candidacy, nominated Emily Thornberry to ensure she received enough nominations to proceed to the next stage.[22][23][24] On 28 February 2020, Whittome announced that she would be voting for Rebecca Long-Bailey for leader and Dawn Butler for deputy.[25]

In February 2020, Whittome organised a letter signed by 170 MPs demanding that foreign-born offenders not be deported back to Jamaica.[26]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Leslie won the seat in the 2017 general election as a Labour candidate before leaving the party in February 2019 to join Change UK.[20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "West Bridgford West". Nottingham County Council. Archived from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  2. ^ Lowe, Yohannes (14 December 2019). "Youngest MP elected in 2019 intake vows to give half her salary to local charities". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.(subscription required)
  3. ^ a b c Canton, Naomi (13 January 2020). "'Will work to build solidarity between South Asians': UK's youngest MP, Indian origin Nadia Whittome". The Times of India. Retrieved 20 January 2020.
  4. ^ a b c Hinsliff, Gaby (20 January 2020). "Nadia Whittome, Britain's youngest MP, on race, Rees-Mogg – and taking a massive pay cut". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 January 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d "Nadia Whittome: Youngest MP had been looking for temp work". BBC News. 16 December 2019. Archived from the original on 16 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  6. ^ a b c Reid, Ben (13 December 2019). "Country's youngest MP donating a huge chunk of her salary to charity". Nottingham Post. Archived from the original on 14 December 2019. Retrieved 14 December 2019.
  7. ^ @AbolishEton (17 December 2019). "Newly elected MP @NadiaWhittome "I went to a private school from aged 7–11 years old and my experience taught me why they shouldn't exist. Private schools entrench class segregation. Every child should receive a good education, from a school that is accountable and free"" (Tweet). Retrieved 31 January 2019 – via Twitter.
  8. ^ a b "Labour selects all-women candidates for Bridgford" (PDF). West Bridgford Local News. January 2017. p. 11. Archived (PDF) from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  9. ^ Warburton, Tom (10 November 2019). "The Tab meets Nadia Whittome, hopeful Labour candidate for Nottingham East". The Tab. Retrieved 23 January 2020.
  10. ^ Smoke, Ben (9 December 2019). "Nadia Whittome: Labour's bright young hope for Britain Knock Knock: An Election Special". Huck. Archived from the original on 11 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  11. ^ Thompson, Jackie (4 July 2017). "Nadia Whittome, first year law student talks about her interest in politics and experience to date!". University of Nottingham. Archived from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  12. ^ "MP Pat Glass to stand down after 'bruising' EU campaign". BBC News. 28 June 2016. Retrieved 31 January 2020.
  13. ^ a b Locker, Joseph (28 October 2019). "Former Meadows care worker selected as Labour candidate for Nottingham East". Nottingham Post. Archived from the original on 15 November 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  14. ^ Bond, Daniel (16 December 2019). "Class of 2019: Meet the new MPs". Politics Home. Archived from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  15. ^ Ismail, Sacha (30 October 2019). "Left win in Nottingham East". Workers' Liberty. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  16. ^ "National Committee". Another Europe is Possible. 5 February 2019. Archived from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  17. ^ "What we fight for". Labour for a Socialist Europe. Archived from the original on 8 April 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  18. ^ "Nottingham East". BBC News. Archived from the original on 13 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  19. ^ "Youngest Members of Parliament since 1979". Parliament of the United Kingdom. 17 December 2019. Archived from the original on 17 December 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  20. ^ a b Eaton, George (20 February 2019). "Chris Leslie interview: Labour have 'massively underestimated' a new centrist party". New Statesman. Archived from the original on 10 November 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  21. ^ Canton, Naomi (14 December 2019). "15 Indian-origin MPs in new UK Parliament". The Times of India. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  22. ^ "Rolling list: MP/MEP nominations for Labour leadership candidates". LabourList. 8 January 2020. Retrieved 11 January 2020.
  23. ^ @NadiaWhittomeMP (13 January 2020). "I'm on my way to Westminster to lend my nomination to @EmilyThornberry to get her over the line" (Tweet). Retrieved 13 January 2020 – via Twitter.
  24. ^ Rodgers, Sienna (13 January 2020). "Lewis pulls out of leadership race to allow recasting of nominations". LabourList. Retrieved 13 January 2020.
  25. ^ @NadiaWhittomeMP (28 February 2020). "I'm pleased to be voting for @RLong_Bailey and @DawnButlerBrent for Leader and Deputy Leader. Both provide the modern, future-facing, and principled politics that our party and country so desperately need. Read my statement here" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  26. ^ "Windrush: 170 MPs call on PM to halt Jamaica deportation flight – BBC News". BBC. Retrieved 10 February 2020.
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Chris Leslie
Member of Parliament for Nottingham East
2019–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Mhairi Black
Baby of the House
2019–present
Incumbent