To receive a report from Sharon Burgess, Head of Safeguarding Adults.
RECEIVED a report from Sharon Burgess, Head of Safeguarding Adults highlighting the following:
i) The report provided an update on the recommendations from the Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery Scrutiny Workstream report and had been completed to provide an overview of what the Safeguarding Adults Team has been working on since the Modern Slavery Act 2015 came into force.
ii) Since the arrival of the Modern Slavery lead officer on 13th August 2018, a draft Adult Social care Modern Slavery Policy and Procedure has been compiled and sent to relevant teams for consultation.
iii) Modern Slavery awareness sessions were held for council staff in March 2018 and over 100 staff had attended. More in-depth training has been provided in relation to the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) to our designated Single Point of Contacts (SPOCs).
iv) A corporate strategy has been developed with the support from the Strategy and Policy Hub which is currently undergoing internal consultation. It is hoped that this will be made available for public consultation in the summer.
v) The Charter Against Modern Slavery was signed by Cllr Mary Maguire on 18th October 2018 which shows how Enfield Council is working to ensure that supply chains are ethically sourced.
vi) The recommendations that were agreed in April 2018 were listed in the report (see Agenda Pack) and an update was provided on each one.
vii) There had been challenges in ensuring good partnership engagement and in raising community awareness. There may also be potential funding issues going forward due to the anticipated increase in referrals
viii) The report recommended that it is necessary for the online training on I.Learn to become compulsory training for Enfield council staff.
ix) Next steps included the development of a complex case modern day slavery panel that can deliver a timely and multi-discipline approach, to support with the management of high-risk cases. Timescales for this were not yet known but it would be discussed at the next steering group meeting to seek ideas and suggestions on how it will be implemented and managed.
x) The online consultation for the Modern Day Slavery Strategy and Action Plan will undergo a robust consultation, which will include external and internal partners, residents and business in Enfield and will be available online from February 2019, before being presented to Cabinet in the Summer of 2019.
The following questions and comments were made:
· Further information was provided on the types of training that has taken place and the departments and teams that it had been delivered to.
· Members felt that it was important for them to receive training as soon as possible as they are often the first point of contact for the public and well placed to identify and report areas of concern within their wards. Sharon said that if this training had not yet been completed it would be arranged as soon as possible. In the meantime Members were encouraged to access the online training module via I.Learn or by contacting the Learning and Development Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Action: Sharon Burgess, Head of Adult Safeguarding
· NRM figures for Enfield show 1 adult and 12 children had been referred to the Government last year. Many cases still go unreported for various reasons therefore it is vital to raise awareness of Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking to ensure it becomes a priority.
· Councillor Smith asked for a copy of the Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery Scrutiny Workstream report detailing the recommendations made.
Action: Susan O’Connell, Governance & Scrutiny Officer
· It was felt the report did not include much analysis and there was no direction in the report on partnership working with the Police. Sharon confirmed that the Police are very involved and there will be a meeting in the next few weeks to discuss a joint strategy. Sharon said she was happy to provide a much more detailed report if it was felt necessary.
· In response to whether there is a connection between unaccompanied children that arrive in Enfield and Modern Day Slavery Sharon explained that it is a bit of an unknown as if children come to light the Local Authority have a duty to look after them however a lot is not known about Modern Day Slavery as statistically it is very under reported across the board.
· Sharon emphasised however that these sorts of concerns and issues will be teased out as work on the strategy moves forward.
· Members agreed that it was a positive step to make the training mandatory and asked how this would be monitored as historically training had been a bit of challenge. Sharon said that she would expect the training to be monitored in the same way as other mandatory training across the council.
· Enfield Council has formed a Modern Slavery London Leads Group which is hosted by the London Councils offices, which enables joint working across London with our neighbouring boroughs and opportunities to share best practice.
· Consideration is ongoing as to where Modern Slavery sits e.g. within Commissioning, Adults or Children’s Services and there is still no definitive direction from the Government on this. The Chair added that we need to ensure that when Adult Safeguarding gets discussed by the Overview & Scrutiny Committee, Modern Day Slavery does not slip through the net.
· As part of the Safeguarding Adolescents from exploitation and Abuse Strategy 2019-2021, consultations have been held and will continue to be held, with schools, parents/carer groups to help raise awareness and ensure joined up working continues to protect vulnerable students.
· In conclusion the Chair said things are at a very early stage of development strategically, but the direction of travel looks good. He thanked Sharon for her informative update and felt that it would be most useful to receive a progress report within the next twelve months, preferably during the second half of the municipal year. In the meantime, should any challenges or funding issues arise these should be brought to officers to accelerate to future OSC meetings.