The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced that one of the country’s leading lawyers has agreed to become his Deputy Mayor for Social Integration, Social Mobility and Community Engagement. Matthew Ryder QC will join the Mayor’s team at City Hall from the beginning of October.
Matthew Ryder was born in north London, currently lives in Brixton and began his career working for a legal aid firm in Harlesden. He has spent the last 16 years practicing law at Matrix Chambers, during which time he has become one of the UK’s leading barristers in crime, human rights, media and privacy.
Over the course of his career he has consistently been recommended as a ‘leader in the field’ by legal directories and been one of a very small number of Advocates to be instructed in both the European Court of Human Rights, and the International Criminal Court. His clients have included the parents of Stephen Lawrence.
A keen sportsman, Matthew created and ran a successful annual charity basketball tournament in Brixton that helped young British players progress onto College scholarships in America and even to professional careers in Europe and the US. He has written for national newspapers on social policy and cultural issues. And he formerly chaired the Black Cultural Archive.
Matthew Ryder said: “I am hugely excited about taking on this role. There is no more important task in a global city like ours than building successful communities where Londoners of every background feel connected with each other. As London becomes ever more diverse ensuring those connections are made is one of our greatest challenges.”
During Matthew’s first months in his new role he intends to make a priority of ensuring that City Hall is using the very best and most reliable possible methods of measuring social integration. Having robust data will enable him to distinguish between the diversity of the city and the actual level of social integration. He is concerned that a city can be hugely diverse but struggle to achieve the successful integration of its communities. He wants to ensure that elderly Londoners feel fully integrated and he is very interested in social mobility and class, particularly as the capital becomes more diverse in terms of income and home ownership.