Emmy Gibbs and Joy, her client who was employed under a domestic worker visa, spoke last night on BBC Radio 4.
File on Four explained the grave problems with the current domestic worker visa which is failing to protect workers from slavery. James Ewins QC speaks powerfully about the visa regime which provides no solution for trafficked workers, who must go through the National Referral Mechanism (NRM), a system poorly suited for these workers.
Joy (not her real name) describes her experiences of being detained for removal after going through the NRM and her solicitor, Emily Gibbs, talks through the absurd decisions made in her case.
The independent anti slavery commissioner believes that the solution is an overhaul of the NRM and the introduction of mandatory government sponsored 'information sessions' to educate abusive employers and potential victims.
Yet these sessions cannot bring about a change of culture unless accompanied by clear and concrete rights that are within workers' control. However, despite information sessions being one of James Ewins' recommendations delivered to government some 11 months ago, there is still no clear plan for implementation. In that period, up to 16,000 overseas domestic workers have come to the UK. Many will have chosen to continue to suffer slavery rather than leaping into the unknown.
Read more about changes to protections for domestic workers in this article by Kalayaan, a charity that specialises in advocating for this group.