Salma Yaqoob is a political activist. She is a spokesperson for Birmingham Central Mosque and head of the Birmingham Stop the War Coalition. She became politically active after the September 11 attacks, claiming to have been spat at on the streets of Birmingham in the days after. She has received death threats from Islamist extremists and far-right extremists.
Her parents emigrated to the UK from Pakistan in the 1960s, and her father worked in a mill before joining the Royal Mail. Yaqoob was born in Bradford and raised in Birmingham. She was formerly associated with the Respect Party, of which she was leader and vice-chairman, and a Birmingham City Councillor representing the party.
Recognition for excellence
In 2006 Yaqoob received the Lloyds TSB Asian Jewel Award for Public Service Excellence and according to The Guardianin 2010 she was “the most prominent Muslim woman in British public life”. She was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Birmingham City University in 2015.
She runs a part-time psychotherapy practice, is employed as a Community Engagement Senior Manager at the Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, and serves as Independent Chair of the Stakeholder Council of Birmingham South Central Clinical Commissioning Group.