About Rushanara Ali

About Me

website picRushanara Ali's Biography

Rushanara Ali is the Labour Member of Parliament for Bethnal Green and Bow. She was first elected in May 2010 with a majority of 11,574, having defeated George Galloway’s Respect Party.  Bethnal Green and Bow was one of four Labour gains in 2010.  Rushanara was re-elected in 2015 doubling her majority to 24,317 and earning 61% of the share of the vote.  

Rushanara grew up in her constituency attending Mulberry school and Tower Hamlets College. She was the first in her family to go to University and studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University.  Until her resignation from Labour’s front bench in September 2014 over her decision to abstain on the vote on airstrikes in Iraq, Rushanara served as Shadow Minister for Education and Young People, and between October 2010 and October 2013, as Shadow Minister for International Development.  From November 2014 until the 2015 General Election, Rushanara served as a member of the Treasury Select Committee.

Prior to her election in May 2010, she was Associate Director of the Young Foundation, where she co-founded UpRising a national leadership development and employability charity which has helped thousands of young people develop their campaigning and leadership skills;  she also co-founded the Social Innovation Exchange social which works to connect innovators and social entrepreneurs around the world to collaborate to tackle major social problems.  Rushanara also worked at the Communities Directorate of the Home Office leading a programme of work to support local areas following the 2001 riots in Bradford, Burnley and Oldham; at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office where she helped establish what became the Forced Marriage Unit; as a Research Fellow at the Institute for Public Policy Research (1999-2002) working on anti-discrimination issues, and as Parliamentary Assistant for Oona King, former MP for Bethnal Green & Bow (1997-1999). She has also worked as the Research Assistant to Lord Young of Dartington (author of the 1945 Labour Party manifesto), helping him to set up Language Line, a national telephone interpreting company and Futureversity, a youth charity which has helped over a 100,000 young people – raising aspirations, cutting youth crime and getting them into work.  She has previously served as a Commissioner on the London Child Poverty Commission; a board member of Tower Hamlets College; a Trustee of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation; a member of the Tate Britain Council and a member of the Home Office Working Group on Preventing Extremism established after the 7/7 London bombings.



How to Contact Me

Bethnal Green and Bow is a wonderfully diverse community but I know that people here face many challenges. As your MP, I am working hard to improve the lives of all residents and for our community. This website is where you can find out about all the work I have been doing in Bethnal Green and Bow and in Parliament.

If you would like to organise a time to visit me at one of my advice surgeries, or if there is an  issue that you would like to raise with me, please contact my constituency office on 020 7219 7200 or email me at rushanara@rushanaraali.org.