Closing in on Modern Slavery Awareness Day, Leading councillors at Chichester District Council have agreed to adopt a formal agreement on the steps it will take to help prevent modern slavery. The Modern Slavery Transparency Statement was agreed at the council’s Cabinet meeting on Tuesday 5 October 2021.
“This is very timely as Modern Slavery Awareness Day takes place on 18 October,” says Councillor Roy Briscoe, the council’s Cabinet Member for Communities, Sport and Culture. “We are thoroughly committed to preventing and taking action against identified slavery and human trafficking in what we are doing as a council. This type of crime happens in plain sight, it can be on the high street, in agriculture and also in hospitality, and we all have a responsibility to be vigilant and report any concerns to Sussex Police. The statement sets out the expectations of our own organisation, as well as making clear that we expect high standards from all of our contractors, suppliers and other business partners to ensure that they are not using forced, compulsory or trafficked labour, or anyone held in slavery or servitude, whether adults or children.”
The statement, which will soon become mandatory for all local authorities, sets out the council’s actions to address all potential modern slavery risks relating to its activities and the steps in place to combat them.
Councillor Briscoe added: “We work closely with our local partners, and there is a multi -agency serious organised crime group for the Chichester District which looks to tackle all types of exploitative crimes. Exploitation and modern slavery are a priority for the Community Safety Partnership and it also forms part of our safeguarding training for staff, partners, volunteers and others including taxi drivers. Council staff are encouraged to raise any concerns about modern slavery and frontline staff also receive extra training in this area.”
For more information about Modern Slavery Awareness Day go to www.theclewerinitiative.org