Community Safety News & Campaigns

Modern Slavery Awareness Week

Would you know the signs?

This week, 18-22 October 2021, the Community Safety Partnership are supporting Modern Day Slavery Awareness Week incorporating Antislavery day on the 18 October.

In 2019, in the UK 136,000 men, women and children were trapped in modern slavery.

Did you know that only 30 per cent of people feel confident about spotting the signs of modern slavery?

How can you help to prevent it?

  • Be aware
  • Understand the different scenarios where modern slavery can exist
  • Open your eyes to what's happening around you
  • Notice things and tell somebody if you think something is wrong

What is contemporary slavery and what are the signs?

All forms of modern slavery involve forced labour. An enslaved person in the world today has one or more of the following characteristics – they are:

  • Forced to work through mental or physical threats
  • Controlled by an ‘employer’ under the threat of some form of punishment
  • Dehumanised, treated as a commodity or bought and sold as ‘property’
  • Physically constrained or have restrictions placed on their freedom of movement and the choices they way
  • They receive little or no pay for their work, or work to ‘repay’ a so-called debt to their enslavers, even if they had no say in agreeing this debt

The contemporary slave trade is underpinned by global inequality, poverty and discrimination. It exists in every continent, with victims usually drawn from socially excluded and marginalised groups.

According to the International Labour Organisation, 8.4 million children are estimated to be in some form of slavery, such as forced labour, prostitution or drug trafficking. 

Trafficking involves the movement of an individual from one place to another using violence, coercion or deception for the purposes of forced labour or sexual exploitation

Another example is early and forced marriage, which affects women and girls who are married, without choice, into a life with little control or say about their future.

As a member of the public, you can report your suspicions/concerns to www.modernslaveryhelpline.org/report

 

National Hate Crime Awareness Week (9-15 October 2021)

Within the Harborough District, racial hate incidents are the highest reported type of hate incidents, often targeted towards Gypsy, Roma, Travellers (GRT).  There have also been incidences of prejudices against Asian ethnic minorities, and incidences of graffiti in support of far-right extremism.  Harborough District Council is committed to reducing all incidences of hate, and raising awareness of how to report hate across the district, particularly during National Hate Crime Awareness Week (9th -16th October 2021).

A Hate Incident is one if the victim or anyone else thinks that something said or done was motivated by hostility or prejudice based on one of the following 5 characteristics:

  • disability
  • race
  • religion
  • transgender identity
  • sexual orientation.

This means that if you believe something is a hate incident, whether it’s verbal abuse like name calling or offensive jokes, graffiti, online abuse or malicious complaints, it should be recorded as such by the person you are reporting it to. All police forces record hate incidents based on these five personal characteristics.

A Hate Crime is where a criminal offence is committed, and this was carried out because of hostility or prejudice based on one or more of the 5 characteristics above.

How to report.

Hate Incidents and Hate Crimes should be reported to the Police through the True Vision website, https://www.report-it.org.uk/home  unless it is an emergency or a crime that is happening, in which case phone 999.

If you would like further information, please contact Community Safety on communitysafety@harborough.gov.uk.

 

Alcohol Awareness Week (15-21 November 2021)

Alcohol Awareness Week is a chance for the UK to get thinking about drinking. It’s a week of awareness-raising, campaigning for change, and more. The theme for Alcohol Awareness Week 2021 is ‘Alcohol and relationships’.

Alcohol and relationships are closely linked. Many of us associate alcohol with socialising, and alcohol can become a big part of our connections and interactions with those around us. But when our own or a loved one’s drinking starts to negatively affect our relationships, or stands in the way of us taking action on our own drinking, it can have a huge impact on our lives.

On top of this, research shows that many of us have found ourselves drinking more to deal with feelings of loneliness and isolation during the pandemic. As we leave lockdown and return to normal life there will be new pressures too – pressures to drink, 'sober shaming', and pressures we put on ourselves to get back to ‘normal’ socialising.

Sign up to do something positive or to find help and support if you are concerned about your own/a loved one's alcohol use at https://alcoholchange.org.uk/get-involved/campaigns/alcohol-awareness-week-1 or call our local service providers https://www.turning-point.co.uk/services/leicestershire

 

Road Safety Awareness Week - 16-21 November 2021

Road safety and speeding, more specifically, are always key concerns when the Community Safety Partnership ask what priorities should feature in our plan. 

Road Safety Awareness Week allows communities/interest groups to work together to raise awareness of any road safety concerns you may have. It could be that you are a parent/governor/student at a local school where more could be done to reduce the 30 minutes of parking and safety in your locality.

Road safety charity Brake runs this awareness week to encourages communities to get involved with this important work more details can be found at www.brake.org.uk/road-safety-week 

Another initiative you could think about is running a Community Speed Watch.

Community Speed Watch is an educational scheme to help people reduce speeding traffic though their community. The scheme enables volunteers to work with police, county council, and within their community, to raise awareness of the dangers of speeding and to help control the problem locally.

Community Speed Watch incorporates poster campaigns and a pledge system, linked to direct action using speed detection equipment, all under the supervision of the County Council. The use of the radar devices will not lead to prosecution but drivers will get a letter from the police instead.

To find out more about the scheme, you can register your interest with the Community Speed Watch co-ordinator on 0116 3057233 or visit www.communityspeedwatch.org.uk/contact  

Our other partnership campaign is FATAL Four. The Fire Service take the lead on this project highlighting the four biggest factors likely to cause an accident. These are excessive speed, distractions (such as mobile phones), being under the influence of drink or drugs, and failing to wear a seat belt.

Find out more about this hard-hitting campaign at https://leics-fire.gov.uk/your-safety/road-safety/the-fatal-four/

 

Celebrate Safely

Pumpkins and candles

With Hallowe'en and Fireworks Night on the way, the Celebrate Safely campaign is offering some important advice to ensure people have fun whilst respecting others:

  • If trick or treating, only visit places you know won’t mind a visit, and respect the 'No trick or treaters signs'
  • Be considerate to others 
  • Ensure children are always accompanied by an adult
  • Keep to well-lit areas, wear reflective clothing and carry a torch

If you don’t want trick and treaters at your door you can download a 'Trick or Treaters No Thanks' poster here.

To reduce disturbance for people and animals, and to prevent firework night incidents and accidents, we would strongly urge you to attend an organised firework display. 

If you do intend on holding your own:

  • Talk to your neighbours and inform themCelebrate Safely logo
  • Only buy fireworks from a legitimate retailer
  • Check the fireworks you buy are suitable for the size of garden and conform to British Standard (BS 7114)
  • Always store fireworks in a metal box, kept closed between use - never put fireworks in your pocket
  • Never hold a lit firework and always wear gloves when holding a sparkler

Remember it is illegal if you possess a firework and you’re under 18 years old, set off fireworks after midnight on 5 November, or set off fireworks (including sparklers) in the street or public place
Breaking these laws can result in an on the spot fine of £90.

 

#endexploitationnow

Antislavery charity Unseen is launching a new campaign in March to raise awareness and reporting of labour abuse among clothing workers in the Leicester area.   #endexploitationnow is urging people to get in touch with Unseen's Modern Slavery & Exploitation helpline if they:

  • think they are the victim of labour abuse or
  • they know someone who is being exploited.  

There is a 24 - Hour helpline on 08000 121 700 to call for advice on what to do.  All calls are free, confidential and can be conducted in more than 200 languages. 

Visit www.unseenuk.org/news

 

Domestic Abuse

Reports of domestic abuse have been increasing across the district since lockdown.  We could put this down to increased awareness of reporting, or, sadly, due to an increase in incidents of domestic abuse.  Either way, we are always working to improve awareness of UAVA, this is the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland service for supporting people affected by domestic abuse or sexual violence.  For more information, have a look at their website, or for support please call 0808 80 200 28, in an emergency, always call 999.

 

Police Beat Newsletters

Please see the latest police beat newsletter for Lutterworth and for Harborough and the Bowdens.

Loneliness

Loneliness can affect so many people in many ways at different times in their lives and can lead to an increased risk of some mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, sleep problems and stress. It affected approximately 10% of residents of Harborough District before the effects of COVID 19.  Leicestershire Communities, have produced a guide to tackling loneliness, either as a lonely person, or as someone who could make a difference in someone else’s life. 

There are also lots of different organisations you can join to help tackle loneliness, like befriending services such as VASL (Voluntary Action South Leicestershire). It is particularly important following this year, where social distancing and isolation have become the norm.