Preet Kaur Gill : The First Female British Sikh MP

Preet Kaur Gill: A Trailblazer for Women in British Politics

In the vibrant tapestry of British politics, one name shines brightly, casting a remarkable and inspirational glow. Preet Kaur Gill, born on 21st November 1972 in Edgbaston, Birmingham, is a trailblazing British politician who has been serving as the Shadow Minister for Primary Care and Public Health since 2023. She is a member of the Labour Party and has represented Birmingham Edgbaston in the UK Parliament since 2017.

Early Life of Preet Kaur Gill: Nurtured by Resilience

Preet Kaur Gill’s early life was shaped by her roots and a strong foundation in values. She was born to Indian parents, Daljit Singh Shergill and Kuldeep Kaur Shergill, who instilled in her the importance of hard work and community service.

Her father, a foreman turned bus driver, was renowned as the longest-serving president of the Guru Nanak Gurdwara Smethwick. It was within this environment that Preet Kaur Gill’s sense of responsibility towards her community began to flourish.

Growing up in a family of nine, she imbibed the significance of unity and family bonds. Her educational journey started at Lordswood Girls’ School and continued at Bournville College. At the latter, she demonstrated her leadership skills by being elected as the student president.

Preet Kaur Gill’s thirst for knowledge and her unwavering commitment to serving humanity led her to graduate from the University of East London with a first-class BSc in sociology with social work.

Following her graduation, she embarked on a journey that would take her to a kibbutz in Israel, where she worked as a social worker, and to India, where she worked with street children. This experience broadened her perspective and deepened her dedication to making a difference in the lives of others.

Her journey continued as she worked as a social worker in Waltham Forest and Birmingham, specializing in child protection and eventually serving as children’s services manager in Birmingham from 2010 to 2017. Her experience on the frontlines of social work provided her with invaluable insights into the challenges faced by the most vulnerable in society.

Political Ascent: A Commitment to Change

Preet Kaur Gill’s dedication to public service extended beyond her role as a social worker. In 2012, she was elected as a councillor for Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council, and she was re-elected in the 2016 local election. Her tenure as a councillor included serving as the Cabinet Member for Public Health and Protection, where she continued to advocate for the well-being of her community.

In the realm of national politics, Preet Kaur Gill made history by becoming the first female British Sikh Member of Parliament. She was selected by the Labour Party to contest Birmingham Edgbaston in 2017, following Gisela Stuart’s decision not to seek re-election.

In the 2017 general election, she secured the seat for Labour with an impressive majority of 6,917 votes, making her a powerful voice in the British political landscape.

Her commitment to making a positive impact didn’t stop at her election. Preet Kaur Gill was elected as a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee in July 2017, where she continued to work for the betterment of her constituents and the nation at large.

In January 2018, she was appointed to the shadow cabinet as International Development Minister, a role she shared with Dan Carden. Her work on the international stage reflected her deep-rooted belief in the importance of Britain’s role in global development and humanitarian efforts.

Her dedication to a better future extended to her support for the People’s Vote campaign in March 2019, advocating for a second referendum on EU membership. Preet Kaur Gill’s commitment to the well-being of her community is further exemplified by her role as the chair of the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Mentoring and for British Sikhs.

A Journey of Unwavering Faith

Preet Kaur Gill’s life is a testament to the power of faith, both in herself and her religion. Her Sikh faith has been a guiding light, propelling her to help others and remain steadfast in her convictions.

She believes in the Sikh principle of ‘Sarbat da bhala,’ which advocates for the betterment of all mankind, transcending cultural and religious boundaries. This belief is the driving force behind her social work, where she endeavors to assist everyone, regardless of their diverse backgrounds.

In the world of politics, Preet Kaur Gill has faced both admiration and criticism, but neither has shaken her confidence or her ability to make decisions rooted in the welfare of her constituents.

Her unwavering conviction and resolve set an inspiring example, not only for Sikh women but for women worldwide. She has broken barriers and shattered glass ceilings, proving that women can be influential and transformative figures in the political landscape.

Awards and Recognition: A Testament to Impact

Preet Kaur Gill’s impactful journey has been recognized and celebrated. In September 2018, she was named one of the Birmingham City University’s Brummies Who Inspire, alongside fellow Birmingham MP, Shabana Mahmood.

In October 2018, she was presented with the Sikh Women of Substance award by the Sikh’s Women Alliance UK. In December 2018, she received the Giving Voice award from the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists.

One of her most notable achievements came in December 2020 when she won the overall prize at the MP of the Year Awards organized by the Patchwork Foundation. This award recognized her consistent championing of young people, her representation of the Sikh Community, and her initiative to tackle Fuel Poverty through a strategic campaign aimed at the UK’s biggest fuel companies.

Personal Life: A Balance of Family and Service

Preet Kaur Gill has been married to Sureash Singh Chopra, a social worker, since 2009. Their union has brought forth two beautiful daughters. Despite her demanding political career, she finds balance in her role as Vice President of the Local Government Association and a non-executive director for the Spring Housing Association.

Also Read : Aloke Lohia : Shaping the Future of Petrochemicals

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.