Following the publication of the report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services and the arrests yesterday of two men by the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority in connection with human trafficking in and around Derby PCC Hardyal Dhindsa has been in discussion with the Chief Constable of Derbyshire to get a better understanding of the local picture. In a confidential briefing he was informed of operations undertaken both at a local Force level and with partners from the East Midlands Specialist Operations Unit dealing with issues from labour exploitation to sex trafficking.
Commenting on the report and the briefing, PCC Dhindsa said,
“It is totally shocking that in 2017 we are dealing with issues of slavery. Crimes like this strike at the heart of a civilised, humanitarian society. We have to tackle this type of exploitation and we have to stop it.
“It is good to see that Derbyshire is identified as one of the three forces the report mentions as showing good practice, but it is clear there is still work that needs to be done and I will be talking to the Chief Constable to understand how we can build upon this good work.
“Modern slavery is one of the new and emerging issues that the Police Service is having to respond to at a time when budgets are under increased pressure. Every day difficult decisions are having to be taken about where resources need to be allocated. I think this is a conversation that needs to be held with the public, and it needs to happen now, not when the police have to stop providing a quality police service.
“It has been suggested that Modern Slavery is one of those issues where if you ‘lift the stone’ you will find all kinds of things, and for some this may discourage them. Derbyshire has never been afraid to lift the stone and I want to ensure that this remains the case.
“Once again I am immensely proud of the work that Derbyshire Constabulary is doing against a very challenging backdrop, but now is not a time to rest on our laurels and the Chief Constable and I will continue, as always, to provide the quality police service that the people of Derbyshire expect and deserve.”
The HMICFRS Report can be found here
Posted on Wednesday 25th October 2017