New minister for civil society announced

30 Jul 2019 News

DCMS ministerial team in July 2019 (Matt Warman, Rebecca Pow, Baroness Barran, Nicky Morgan, and Nigel Adams)

DCMS Flickr

Baroness Barran has been appointed as minister for civil society within the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. 

Barran, who joined the department last week, has an extensive background in the charity sector. Before entering the House of Lords she founded and ran the domestic abuse awareness charity SafeLives, and also worked at the charity sector think tank New Philanthropy Capital (NPC). 

Her new role covers civil society, youth and social action, the government's inclusive economy unit, loneliness, DCMS business in the Lords and ceremonials. 

The previous minister for civil society, Mims Davies, has moved to a similar role at the Department for Work and Pensions. She had held combined responsibility for civil society and sport, which led charity leaders to complain that this was too much work for one minister. 

Nigel Adams has now become the minister of state for sport, media and creative industries, while Matt Warman is responsible for digital and broadband.

Nicky Morgan was appointed as culture secretary by the new prime minister Boris Johnson last week. Adams joined the department as a minister of state and Warman and Barran as parliamentary under-secretaries for state. But until today it was unclear who would be responsible for civil society.

The delay prompted Sir Stephen Bubb, director of Charity Futures, to write a letter to the Times suggesting that there would be no minister responsible and that this was "insulting".

Lord Ashton of Hyde, who was the DCMS representative in the House of Lords, has become chief whip for the Lords.

More about Baroness Barran

Barran was made a life peer in June 2018. 

She founded domestic abuse charity SafeLives and was its chief executive for 13 years, standing down in 2017. She was awarded an MBE in 2011 for her work addressing domestic violence. 

She was a trustee for Comic Relief until December 2018 and chair of the Henry Smith Charity until November 2018. 

Before moving into the charity sector she had a career in investment banking. She then joined NPC as head of grant development in 2001, serving in the role until 2014.

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