- Human rights & Civil liberties
Biography of Issan Ghazni
Born 15 November 1959 in Gujrat (Punjab) Pakistan, I grew up and have lived in Nottingham since childhood. I am married to Ghazala and have 4 children, two sons, Haroon and Rahil and two daughters, Paras and Aaila.
My father served in the British Indian Army during the second world war and became a POW after being captured at Singapore on February 15th 1942. After experiencing and surviving the horrors of Japanese prison camps, he came to Britain in 1954 to travel and to forge a better life, settling in Nottingham and working first in the railways and then for British Gypsum.
I went to Roland Green Comprehensive School in the Meadows and then to Peoples College of FE. I left Nottingham briefly to study Business Studies and Finance at Preston Polytechnic and later went to the University of Leicester to complete Postgraduate Studies in Human Resource Management.
After my education I set up my training and management consultancy practice in 1995 specialising in equalities, diversity and human rights and we continue to work with public, private and voluntary community sector clients. In addition I have managed a consultancy which provides leadership training, coaching and performance services dedicated to support individuals and businesses.
I have worked in senior roles and acted as consultant and interim manager for a range of clients including the Learning and Skills Council, Centrex – Central Police Training and Development Authority, Capita Plc, NHS, Home Office, Cabinet Office, Independent Safeguarding Authority and the Legal Ombudsman. I worked within health and social care in the third sector as Director of Regional Operations Central England for Arthritis Care.
I was appointed National Diversity Adviser to the Liberal Democrat Party from October 2007 to December 2010. I left that role to become Special Adviser to Vince Cable MP in his capacity as Chair of the Diversity Engagement Group (DEG). I subsequently continued to advise officers and parliamentarians including the Party’s Chief Executive Chris Fox, Andrew Stunel MP and Tom Brake MP.
I was previously a Labour Councillor for Radford Ward 1987-91 and left to join the Liberal Democrats in 2003 when I could no longer identify with the direction Tony Blair was taking the party towards. The illegal, disastrous and unjustified war in Iraq proved to be the last straw. At that point I decided to sign up and come to rest in a more comfortable space when I saw Charles Kennedy speaking so passionately at the anti-war demonstration.
I stood as a Parliamentary Candidate in Nottingham East in 2005 where I achieved a 9.8% swing towards the Liberal Democrats and leapfrogged the Conservatives to come second place to Labour. I subsequently stood again in the local council elections in Berridge Ward and led a campaign team within the same constituency in 2007 – achieving a major swing to the Liberal Democrats and coming from a poor third place to within 20 votes of winning a historic victory over labour in one of their safest seats in the city.
I am currently:
I have recently been asked to join the Party’s Race Equality Task Force chaired by Baroness Meral Hussein Ece to bring about recommendations to the Federal Executive on policy and strategic priorities to promote race equality within the 2015 General Election Manifesto.
I am a passionate campaigner for equality and fairness. As such, I am widely recognised in the Party at all levels for contributing to promoting diversity and for setting up the Party’s Diversity Engagement Group (DEG).
I am also well recognised as a tireless campaigner within my own community. I led a successful community campaign – Berridge Action Group for Schools (BAGS) to support local parents when a popular Church of England Independent School, Bluecoat, attempted to cut a traditional link to a nearby inner city junior school and remove the existing quota of incoming pupils. The successful and high profile community campaign encouraged the school to rethink its proposed policy and to maintain the relationship.
I am also deeply passionate about the East Midlands and believe in the people, local communities and in their potential to make the region one of the best places to live and do business in the UK.
- Director of Voice4Change England
- Chair of the Nottingham City Liberal Democrats
- Chair of the Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Constituencies Group
- Executive member of the East Midlands Regional Party
- Chair of Ethnic Minority Liberal Democrats (EMLD)
- Regional Diversity Champion for the East Midlands
- Member of the Diversity Engagement Group (DEG)