Our Co-op’s been getting a lot of recognition for our work to tackle slavery recently. We’ve been praised as a ‘shining example’ by Peers in the House of Lords, thanked by Kevin Hyland the Anti-slavery Commissioner, and have hit the headlines for our ‘Bright Future’ programme that helps victims of Modern Slavery back into paid work.
Much of this has happened since Paul Gerrard came on board as our Policy Director in early 2016, so it’s no surprise to his colleagues that just six months after our campaign was launched he’s been named the 92nd most influential person in the world, on trafficking and Modern Slavery.
The 2017 Human Trafficking & Slavery Top 100 Influence Leaders List by Asset Compliance, “recognises outstanding individuals and shines light on those who have made a significant, positive impact to human trafficking and modern slavery compliance in 2016-2017.”
Paul came here in early 2016, on a secondment from the Civil Service where he spent 19 years working in Tax, Customs and Excise, and the Home Office, which is where he first worked on human trafficking and Modern Slavery.
Paul joined the Co-op permanently about six months ago, and now has responsibility for all of our ethical policies and campaigns, which include our campaign to tackle loneliness and Modern Slavery. At the moment he spends a lot of time in London, meeting with law makers, NGOs and influencers to gain support for ‘Bright Future’ and campaign for better legal protection for victims of Modern Slavery. He is naturally modest about his work, but his colleagues wanted to say well done on making the list!