Dudley Council staff given tips on how to spot modern slavery

More than 1,000 members of staff at Dudley Council are set to be offered specialist training in how to spot signs of modern slavery.

Staff will be educated on ways to spot modern slavery
Staff will be educated on ways to spot modern slavery

Dudley Council bosses are proposing a new statement and policy on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking, which includes strict checks on suppliers used by the authority.

The document is set to go before Dudley Council's cabinet tonight for approval.

Nearly 250 staff have already received training across ten sessions in September and October – with plans in place to train up to 800 more before the end of the year.

The programme enables council officers to learn how to identify and report suspected incidents of modern slavery.

The statement and policy will also require all suppliers to the council to sign contracts to confirm they are compliant with the Modern Slavery Act 2015, in a bid to ensure slavery or human trafficking is not taking place in any of the authority's supply chains.

It confirms the council's procedures for vetting new employees – including checks on whether they have the right to work in the UK. It also outlines a whistle blowing policy, which encourages employees to report concerns without fear of reprisals.

The statement and policy says the council only uses specified and reputable employment agencies to source temporary labour and undertakes 'due diligence' when taking on new suppliers.

Councillor Gaye Partridge, Dudley Council's cabinet member for community safety, said: "We are committed to doing all that we can to ensure that there is no modern slavery or human trafficking in our supply chains.

"We will not support or deal with any business knowingly involved in slavery or human trafficking.

"We will work with communities and partners to ensure a robust response to tackling these issues.

"We are confident that steps outlined in our action plan will address the council’s commitment to preventing slavery and human trafficking.

"As well as this, we will also be signing the Charter Against Modern Slavery, which is above and beyond our statutory requirements.”

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