Check out our WMASN Newsletter April 2018 for the latest news and updates on the Network and anti-slavery efforts in the West Midlands. WMASN Newsletter April 2018, and see the introductory letter by our Network chair, Robin Brierley, below:
“Thank you all for your continued support and contributions to the WMASN. NRM referrals continue to rise in the West Midlands and that’s in part to all the work being done on awareness raising, training and information sharing. The joint NHS event outside Grand Central with the Rah Rah Theatre Company was such an innovative way to raise awareness and had some excellent media coverage.
The Birmingham City Council Coordinator John Hunter has now retired and we wish him all the luck in the future. Unknown to me for a long time was that John, outside of work, was a poet and screenplay writer. He very kindly wrote a poem dedicated to all our work on Modern Slavery called ‘Liberate’ it will be on our website soon and
anyone wishing a copy please contact us.
Our research work with PH England and Westminster University is in its final stages before going for review and we hope to have it published in the PH Journal in the near future. A key finding is the need for awareness of Modern Slavery by GPs and in particular their reception staff. This is vital in respect of victims being identified, and post rescue receiving the health care they require.
Our first Homelessness and Modern Slavery Task Group has taken place and draft Terms of Reference have been sent out for consultation. This work will feed into the Mayors Homeless Task Group and now into the National Task Group too. Key aims include understanding the nature and scale of trafficking of homeless and rough sleepers in the West Midlands and of potential homelessness post NRM support. It is
envisaged that this will also support the 7 Local Authorities in their implementation of the Homelessness Reduction Act.
Our last presentations on post NRM care and support by Snowdrop and Trafficking of Albanian Nationals by the Shpresa Programme received excellent feedback. We will aim to continue in the same vein in terms of raising awareness on particular subjects utilising experts in their field. Our next presentation will be on Domestic Servitude – it will cover two broad types of domestic servitude: the traditional domestic servant
working for (often overseas) employers and the ‘family’ member who may never have been paid (the defence frequently being that he/she is a family member) and has been kept a virtual prisoner often for many years. It will also cover the other indicators of control, degrading and humiliating treatment and abuse. It will also cover the signs to look out for in a potential domestic servitude case and how those signs and indicators can be interpreted. Please contact us if you wish to attend.
Lastly Nick Walton and I are extremely grateful to Karen Saunders PH England for nominating us to be Members of the Faculty for Public Health for our work on Modern Slavery. I consider this a partnership award for us all.”
– Robin Brierley, Chair, West Midlands Anti Slavery Network