PRIYANCA Radhakrishnan on Monday became New Zealand’s first-ever Indian-origin minister after Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern brought five new ministers into her executive. Born in India, Radhakrishnan, 41, went to school in Singapore before moving to New Zealand to further her education.
She has spent her work life advocating on behalf of people whose voices are often unheard – women survivors of domestic violence, and migrant workers who have been exploited. She was elected first as a Member of Parliament belonging to the Labour Party in September 2017. In 2019, she was appointed the Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Minister for Ethnic Communities.
Her work in that area has helped her build the base for her new role of Minister for Diversity, Inclusion and Ethnic Communities. In addition to this, she has become the Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector and Associate Minister for Social Development and Employment.