Fighting Human Trafficking and all forms of Exploitation
In July 2015, the Modern Day Slavery Act (PDF) (GOV.UK) came into force in the UK.
The key areas:
- Creates two new civil orders to prevent modern slavery.
- Establishes an Anti-Slavery Commissioner.
- Makes provision for the protection of modern slavery victims.
Modern slavery includes:
- Human and child trafficking.
- Debt bondage.
- Forced labour.
- Sexual and criminal exploitation.
- Domestic servitude.
How you can help – spot the signs
The signs are often hidden, which makes it very hard to see victims around us. There are some common signs to be aware of:
- Their physical look.
- Poor living conditions.
- Few or no personal effects.
- Restricted freedom of movement.
- Strange travel times.
- Not willing to seek help.
We must tell the National Crime Agency about trafficked people. This is done via the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) for adults and children.
For more information see: Our Modern Day Slavery Statement 2022-23 below.
How to report
The National Referral Mechanism (GOV.UK) is a Home Office process.
Via this, those found that may be victims (also human trafficking) can access support services.
Our points of contact
If you want to speak to someone before the NRM, please contact:
- Halifax Central Initiative
- Telephone: 01422 365948
- Rachel Brady
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Telephone: 01422 393 336 (MAST)
- Username Gemma Stead
- Email: email@example.com
- Telephone: 01422 393861
Our Modern Day Slavery Statement 2023-24
This is made with reference to Section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015. It constitutes Calderdale Councils Anti Slavery/Human Trafficking Statement for the year from 1st April 2023 to 31st March 2024.
Modern Slavery is a term used to describe human trafficking, slavery, forced labour and servitude. It also describes practices such as:
- Debt bondage;
- sale or exploitation of children;
- forced marriage;
- and much more.
We take our responsibility to safeguarding the most vulnerable in society very seriously. This means protecting people from the heinous crimes of modern slavery.
As part of Local Government, we know we have a responsibility to take a robust approach to slavery/human trafficking.
As a Council, we have a responsibility as an employer. We also acknowledge our duty to notify the Secretary of State of suspected victims of slavery/human trafficking. (As introduced by Section 52 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015.)
Calderdale Council's actions to understand all potential modern slavery risks related to its business. Also, to put in place steps to ensure there is no slavery/human trafficking in our business and supply chains.
- We aim to prevent slavery/human trafficking in our corporate activities;
- and to make sure that our supply chains are free from it.
The below sets out practices that we already have in place and any committed actions set for 2022/23. (This is in response to the introduction of Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act.)
Our corporate strategy
This clearly states our aim to support and develop the people we employ. To grow their knowledge and skills, now and in the future.
Along with our strategic partnerships, we often review strategies and policies with input from:
- Employees, team leaders, management teams and HR;
- and our elected members (portfolio holder).
This is to make sure that they stay compliant and fit for purpose.
We consider these policies and procedures to be key in meeting what is required from the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
Our employee code of conduct
This makes it clear to our staff what actions and behaviours are expected of them when they represent the Council.
- We strive to maintain the highest standards of employee conduct and ethical behaviour.
- Breaches are looked in to and remedial action taken, if needed.
For more details, please read:
Our recruitment process is transparent and reviewed often. These robust procedures are used to vet new employees to
- Make sure they are able to confirm their identities and qualifications.
- Also, they are paid directly into an appropriate, personal bank account.
We only use reputable employment agencies to source labour. We also verify the practices of any new agency that we use before their workers are accepted.
We have a scheme to evaluate jobs that is to make sure all employees are paid fairly and equally. We have also brought in the living wage.
We encourage all our employees, customers and business partners to:
- Report any concerns related to the direct activities;
- or our supply chains.
Our whistleblowing procedure makes it easy for employees to make disclosures, without fear of reprisal.
Elected Members' code of conduct
- Are expected to show the highest standards of conduct and behaviour.
Must abide by the code of conduct for members:
Breaches are looked in to by the Monitoring Officer.
Councillors' declarations of interests
All Councillors are expected to record and declare personal and prejudicial interests.
Councillors' induction and training
Our Councillors are expected and encouraged to complete this on election, which includes:
- Equality and diversity;
- and Safeguarding.
There will also be training for both local and parish councillors.
We embrace our responsibility to develop, implement and monitor policies and procedures to:
- Safeguard the welfare of children and vulnerable adults;
- and protect them from harm.
We have a comprehensive policy that all staff and Councillors are expected to read and work within. For more details, please see: Calderdale Safeguarding.
We work within multi agency partnerships to protect and safeguard people. We also have a dedicated email address for staff to raise issues of modern slavery.
We have a programme that all employees should complete, which covers safeguarding awareness.
In particular, in adults and children's social care, it allow officers who work in the community to:
- Identify and know how to report incidents of abuse/neglect;
- this includes modern slavery and trafficking.
The Modern Slavery Partnership training will also be offered to Council and partnership staff. This is to make sure they:
- Have the right level of awareness and/or training to contribute to tackling modern slavery;
- and are aware of the National Referral Mechanism and duty to notify data as needed.
Contractors and service providers
We expect our key contractors to have safeguarding policies, procedures and training in place. This includes policies and statements needed by the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
We work with a range of agencies to:
- Prevent neglect and abuse.
- Detect and report occurrences.
- Support victims.
High risk areas
The Community Safety Partnership has made modern day slavery one of its key priorities.
- This statement has been approved by our Corporate Leadership Team and the Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhoods and Communities. It will be reviewed and updated annually.
- The statement and any actions included with it, will be reported to the Governance and Business Committee each year. This is for monitoring and assurance purposes.