Beauty therapists to be trained to spot signs of forced marriage

Beauty therapists and hairdressers are to be trained to spot the signs of a forced marriage by Slough-based charity Jeena International.

Founder Rani Bilku launched the initiative in the Houses of Parliament yesterday. It will include a series of 15 workshops run across the country.

The workshops will cover the signs to look for, how to identify potential victims and who to alert. Those in the wedding industry will also be trained, with potential signs including bookings made days ahead of the event by someone other than the bride.  

"If a professional thinks something doesn't add up, we want to make sure they know where to go,” said Bilku. "We make sure we are imparting key knowledge to these professionals [so] that they can put everything together to see whether or not there is a safeguarding issue for potentially a forced marriage."

Jeena International has helped many women flee domestic abuse and raised awareness of women’s rights through numerous events.