Naz Shah, Labour MP for Bradford West, visited the University of Northampton to deliver a guest lecture to law students on 12 January.
Arranged by the University of Northampton’s Law Society, Naz shared her story of a challenging childhood and the struggle faced by her mother, who was jailed for the murder of a man at the hands of whom she had suffered years of abuse.
Naz’s childhood and teenage years shaped her drive to improve herself and the world around her; from leaving school aged 12, to her upbringing in Pakistan and forced marriage. Naz shared honest insights into the family’s experiences during her mother’s trial and subsequent incarceration, where they faced a lack of cultural understanding from the authorities.
This early start in life set the scene for her passion to promote honesty and integrity, alongside her campaigns to promote equality and support for women’s rights and cultural diversity.
Talking around institutional racism, cultural context and whistleblowing, Naz encouraged the University’s students – the legal professionals of the future – to consider the way they think about the balance between the essence of the law and the letter of the law as they enter their chosen career path.
Speaking after the event, Naz said: “It was an honour and privilege to be here at the University of Northampton today. This is an excellent chance to speak with and influence the law makers of the future.”