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Stella Judith Creasy[1] (born 5 April 1977)[2] is a British Labour Co-operative politician who has been the MP for Walthamstow since 2010.[3]

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 [hide*1 Early life and career

Early life and career[edit]Edit

Stella Creasy was born in Sutton Coldfield. Her parents are Philip Creasy and Corinna (née Martin), both active Labour Party members; the former is an opera singer and the latter a teacher.[4] She has aristocratic relations, q.v. GortRotherwicketc[5][6] After spending the earlier years of her childhood in Manchester, the family moved to Colchester where she attended Colchester County High School for Girls, a grammar school.[4]

After reading social and political sciences at Magdalene College, Cambridge, she was awarded a PhD in social psychology in 2006 entitled Understanding the lifeworld of social exclusion, while working as a parliamentary researcher.[7] She was the recipient of the Richard Titmuss Award for her psychologypapers. Creasy had failed the Eleven Plus, and had a second chance only because it coincided with her family's move south.[4]

She undertook a career in public relations, and prior to her election to Parliament, was head of public affairs for the Scout Association.[8]

Early political career[edit]Edit

Creasy is a former deputy director of the think tank Involve, and has worked as a researcher and speech writer for Douglas AlexanderCharles Clarke, andRoss Cranston.[9][10]

She is a former Waltham Forest councillor, having served as deputy mayorchief whip and as mayor for four months.[9] Creasy was also a member of theYoung Fabians and served on their executive. In 2009 she co-wrote a pamphlet for the Young Fabians called The New Progressives[11] which also featured articles by Rachel Reeves.

As an MP[edit]Edit

Creasy was selected as the Labour Party candidate for Walthamstow. She was elected to parliament at the 2010 general election, succeeding Neil Gerrard who had retired.[6] Ed Miliband appointed herShadow Minister for Crime Prevention.

Payday loans[edit]Edit

Creasy has been active in campaigning for increased regulation of payday loans companies.[12] In an article in The Guardian, she stated that six companies controlled lending to 90% of the seven million Britons who lacked a bank account or credit card. She claimed that the average cost of credit to these customers at 272% APR has led to cross-party support for a cap as in the rest of Europe and there has been a fourfold increase in payday loans since the start of the recession. In a debate in Parliament she noted the lack of competition in the market and asked for Government support to cap loans which exploited the poor, and in some cases reached 4000%. APR.[13]

In 2012, a Wonga employee used company equipment to make offensive personal attacks on Creasy.[14] Wonga made an "immediate and unreserved apology" after the attacks, and Creasy also requested that the firm promote a constituency event to help struggling families.[14] According to the Guardian, a Wonga computer was used to edit the company Wikipedia entry using several accounts.[14]

Twitter[edit]Edit

At the end of July 2013 on her Twitter timeline, in common with the feminist journalist Caroline Criado-Perez, Creasy received numerous rape threats and other misogynistic messages.[15] The two women had first come into contact in connection with Criado-Perez's successful campaign for the Bank of England to feature a woman on the reverse of £10 bank notes.[4]

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."[16] 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.[17][18] Young objects to Twitter's subsequent change in policy, the company: "shouldn't change its abuse policy in response to being brow-beaten by a politician", he has written.[19] Peter Nunn has been charged with sending menacing messages, the case is pending. [20]

Outside interests[edit]Edit

Creasy is a long-term fan of indie band The Wedding Present and wrote an essay to accompany the re-release of their album Seamonsters in 2012.

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