Former charity consultant Keeley takes shadow civil society minister role

Barbara Keeley has been named as Labour’s shadow minister for arts and civil society.

Before becoming MP for Worsley and Eccles South in 2005 she spent three years as a consultant for the charity Princess Royal Trust for Carers.

During her time at the charity she advised and co-authored reports on issues around carers and primary health care.

The appointment marks a return to frontline politics for Keeley, who was shadow minister for mental health and social care under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership. During this time she also had a stint as shadow minister for older people, social care and carers.

She was also deputy leader of the House of Commons from 2009 to 2010 when Labour was in government under Gordon Brown’s leadership.

“I’m delighted to be appointed Labour’s shadow minister for the arts and civil society,” said Keeley.

“Enabling the power of charities, arts and culture to reach everyone is at the heart of Labour’s vision for a more prosperous Britain. I look forward to working with the sectors to achieve this.”

Shadow culture secretary Lucy Powell added that Keeley “brings huge experience, a real passion for the arts and a strong track record of working with charity and voluntary sectors”.

Keeley replaces Rachael Maskell who quit in December after disagreeing with the Labour Party’s policy of supporting government measures requiring health workers to be vaccinated.

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