• Tuesday, July 16, 2024

UK General Election 2019

General Election: Record number of ethnic minority MPs elected

Home secretary Priti Patel

By: Eastern Eye Staff

A RECORD number of ethnic minority MPs have been elected in the general election, figures revealed on Friday morning (13).

One in ten representatives are now from an ethnic minority background, an increase from a decade ago when the figure was one in 40.

There will be 65 BAME MPs – the highest number so far, compared to 52 non-white MPs at the 2017 general election.

Thinktank British Future said there are 22 non-white Conservative MPs, 41 Labour and two Lib Dems.

In all, 19 new MPs from an ethnic minority background will be entering parliament.

However, there are no non-white representatives in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

British Future director Sunder Katwala said the level of ethnic minority representation was “welcome progress towards a parliament that reflects the multi-ethnic society that it represents”.

“Parties faced serious challenges during the campaign over prejudice and racism,” he said.

“The increasing number of ethnic minority MPs can play an important role in ensuring each party does put its house in order – and shows that it can appeal to citizens of any ethnic or faith background.”

He added: “The growing diversity of Parliament has moved faster than that of FTSE 100 boardrooms – which has flatlined over the last ten years. A rising number of ethnic minority MPs should put additional pressure on other institutions to show that they can keep pace with Britain’s growing diversity too.

Notable additions include Labour’s Kim Johnson, Liverpool’s first ever black MP, and Saqib Bhatti who beat Nick Timothy, Theresa May’s former advisor, to be selected as Tory candidate for Meriden.

Labour’s Claudia Webbe has been elected as representative for Leicester East, a seat previously held by veteran MP Keith Vaz.

All the Indian-origin MPs from the previous Parliament were successful in clinching their seats, with Gagan Mohindra and Claire Coutinho for the Conservative Party and Navendru Mishra for Labour among the first timers.

Other prominent British Asian MPs who held their seats include Priti Patel (Witham); Alok Sharma (Reading West); Rishi Sunak (Richmond, Yorkshire); Virendra Sharma (Ealing Southall); Preet Gill (Edgbaston); Tan Dhesi (Slough) and Suella Braverman (Fareham).

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