Big Breakfast Saturday 10th February
The first Big Breakfast event of 2018 was held in the Hub, it is the second of the current season with 2 more to go. Our presenters were Sian and David Morley, a delightful married couple who hail from Reigate and present on behalf of the International Justice Mission (IJM). An important global player, evidenced by their slot at the recent Davos World Economic Conference attended by all the key world leaders including Theresa May.
The IJM (IJM.org) serve the victims of violence in the Developing world and focus upon modern day slavery. For the UK that predominantly is cyber trafficking and the trafficking of forced sex workers. Elsewhere it includes many occupations as well, where children can be exploited as no cost units of labour or where they are sold to sustain the remaining family members. We saw a film evidencing this within the African fishing industry. IJM currently operates in 17 communities around the world and has relieved more than 40,000 victims to date from oppression. They have trained 50,000 law officers and justice officials around the globe since 2012.
Both Sian and David have been field workers in Mumbai India and shared with us some of their own stories and experiences concerning the tracing and returning of children to their families.
We learnt that IJM use a 4 stage model in their operating approach:
• To rescue victims.
• To provide support (financial and social).
• To use IJM lawyers to bring about justice.
• To work with Government Agencies, ensuring cultural and effective investigation and prosecution practices are adopted.
It was uncomfortable for us to understand and accept that the legal recourse we take for granted in the UK is not remotely available elsewhere. That law enforcement, integrity of investigations and positive prosecutions’ actions migrate to those with most power and or funds. The largest service industry in Africa is personal security! The poor are vulnerable with no access to the means or those who can redress their plight.
Across the world it is estimated that 40 million people are entrapped in slavery, a half of that number in India. 4 billion people live outside the protection we have in the UK.
Within the UK the problem however continues to grow and many of us without knowing may well touch slave workers in our lives. It can be found in low paid jobs, some car wash operations for example, and often in job roles near airports. Croydon is the centre of sex trafficking in this country.
Not all low paid jobs are using slavery for gain but where people have had their documents removed from their ownership, or where they cannot speak or write English and have had their housing controlled it is possible that they are victims being exploited. A helpline number is available to report any such concerns 0800-0121-700.
This was another fascinating and informative presentation and our thanks to Sian and David, alongside our prayers to all those they work on behalf of.
The next Big Breakfast is at the Hub on Saturday 26th May
Colin Darby, of St Modwen, the FTSE 250 company developing the 500 home and commercial unit build to the west of our existing village boundary, will be here to help us understand the phasing impacts of the build over the coming 3 to 4 years. Some will have noticed the clearance works on the site alongside the Copthorne Way in preparation for the road alterations to support traffic access to and from the site.
I suspect that this may be a busy breakfast and so places will be on a first come, first served basis. Places can be booked by calling the Parish Office on 01342 712063 or by signing up at the back of church. Tickets will be on sale from the last week in April. Thanks to Julia for a great breakfast and all the servers and furniture setters.