Tickets & information about the Social Justice Conference – 18-20 September 2024 – are now live

Social Justice Conference 2024

Date: 18th – 20th September 2024

Location: Birmingham Conference & Events Centre

Theme: Innovation & Collaboration

At Cranstoun, we empower people & empower change. We believe in collaboration, creativity, compassion, respect & ambition. We want to break down barriers and stand up tall for the people we work for and campaign alongside.

Our focus at the Social Justice Conference 2024 will be across five areas, harm reduction & drug policy, domestic abuse, criminal justice, housing & homelessness & children & young people’s services.

Conference Location 

This year’s conference will be held in Birmingham at the BCEC. Birmingham has an international airport with great connections to the city centre and conference venue. Trains run direct to Birmingham New Street from across the UK and the venue is a short walk from the train station.

Accommodation

There are plenty of city centre hotels within walking distance of the conference venue and the venue is connected to the Holiday Inn hotel.

Programme

You can find full details of speakers, timings and presentations in our outline programme here.

Please note, the Social Justice Conference outline programme, speakers, sessions and timings may be subject to change.

CLICK HERE to book your ticket

If you are interested in sponsoring this event or having an information table where you can share the work you do please contact: events@cranstoun.org.uk

Sponsored by:

*Camurus have supported this meeting by providing registrations for early career researchers/activists working in the field of substance use/harm reduction/drug policy. In return, delegate passes, and corporate visibility have been provided.   

Conference Exhibitors:

                   

       

 

More exhibitor updates to follow.

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Speakers

We will be announcing new speakers on a weekly basis.

John Campion

West Mercia Police & Crime Commissioner

John was elected as the Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia in 2016. He was re-elected in 2021 and for a third term in May 2024. As PCC, John is committed to tackling all forms of domestic abuse and to ensuring victims are given the tailored support they need to cope and recover. Earlier in his political life, John was elected as a Wyre Forest District Councillor in 2004 and in 2007, became the authority’s youngest and longest serving leader. John was also elected as a Worcestershire County Councillor in 2005.

Caleb Jackson

Head of Change for Youth Sector, Youth Endowment Fund

Caleb has a wealth of experience in youth work, focusing on preventing youth involvement in the criminal justice system, violence, and exploitation. With a degree in Youth and Community Studies, his expertise is shaped by mentoring high-risk youth and running clubs. Caleb collaborates with diverse stakeholders, including the Home Office through to the VCSE and statutory leads, leading the YEF’s focus on Trusted Adults and Positive Activities to improve youth outcomes.

Darren Nicholas

Assistant Director of Services, Cranstoun

Darren leads on our criminal justice services at Cranstoun. These include our pre-arrest diversion, out of court resolution, police custody and prison services. Darren has over 20 years of experience in delivering criminal justice and substance use services. This has included frontline and leadership roles in the charity sector, Prison services, Probation services, and with the police. Darren is passionate about creating a fairer and more effective criminal justice system through innovation, collaboration and compassion.

Phil Harris

Treatment Specialist and Author

Phil has worked with complex needs for over 35 years as a practitioner, trainer and manager. He has extensive experience across frontline substance misuse, homelessness, and mental health services. He has designed an innovative range of multi-county treatment systems and services that have set new standards in practice and treatment outcomes. He has published five books on treatment effectiveness, family and young people with complex needs.

Juha Kahila

Head of International Affairs, Y-Foundation

Juha works in the Y-Foundation as the Head Of International Affairs. He is also coordinating the Nordic Homelessness Alliance. Previously he led the National Housing First development network. He is a Master of social services by education. In the past Juha has been working as a front-line support worker as well as a CEO of a Housing First service provider. He has almost 15 years of work experience in the homelessness sector.

Jason Harwin KPM

Strategic Consultant, Cranstoun

Jason is a recently retired Chief Police Officer having completed more than 30 years’ distinguished service. Whilst an Assistant Chief Constable and Deputy Chief Constable in Lincolnshire Police, he was National Police Chief Council lead for drugs for 5 years. This involved working across Government, criminal justice, and substance treatment partners in developing and delivering evidence informed practice, including diversion. He is now a Strategic Consultant supporting Cranstoun and other organisations to improve collaboration with policing.

Meg Jones

Director of New Business and Services, Cranstoun

As Director for New Business and Services, Meg leads the customer team, with responsibility for Cranstoun’s services nationally, new business and innovation, communications and policy and performance and reporting. Whilst working for West Midlands PCC, Meg led the force to become the first to carry naloxone, led the nationally regarded approach to drug policy and led the team on areas such as domestic abuse policy and commissioning and criminal justice interventions. Meg believes firmly in social justice, and taking compassionate services to people who need them, rather than expecting them to come to us.

Shayla Schlossenberg

Drugs Service Coordinator, Release

Shayla is the current Drugs Service Coordinator at Release. Originally from Baltimore, USA, Shayla has worked in the harm reduction field since 2015, at centres for people who use drugs and sex worker projects in three cities in the USA (Baltimore, Washington DC and New York City), in Shanghai, China, and now in London, UK. Shayla's particular harm reduction skills are working with people affected by patriarchy, people who use methamphetamine, and people who trade sex.

Anna Millington

Founder, HR M2M Network

Anna has spent the last 20 years working with a focus on women and Mothers who use drugs both as a professional and as a peer. She founded the HR M2M network in her local area having identified the lack of adequate provision for Mothers who use drugs who are unable to access harm reduction or related treatment services. The network is in the process of expanding throughout the UK with leads in Wales, England & Ireland.

Deb Hussey

National Safer Lives Lead, Turning Point

Motivated by her own lived experience, Deb began her career as a volunteer in a local Needle & Syringe Programme. She’s had many Harm Reduction focused roles over the years, including running one of the few LGBTQ specific drug and alcohol support services in the country. Passionate about collaborating with people who use drugs, she has worked on projects to increase the uptake of Low Dead Space injecting equipment and promote wider access to naloxone. Deb is currently Turning Point's National Safer Lives Lead.

Claire Longmuir

Head of Policy and Practice for Harm Reduction, Simon Community Scotland

Claire is the Head of Policy and Practice for Harm Reduction for Simon Community Scotland, the largest provider of homelessness services in Scotland. She has led the delivery and implementation of a policy approach that promotes and embeds harm reduction within homelessness services and is committed to driving forward evidence based practice in this area. She has a particular focus on the needs of women and ensuring that women’s voices are heard and prioritised in policy and practice responses.

Aura Roig Forteza

Founder Director, Metzineres

Aura is a social and cultural anthropologist and has a Master’s Degree in Criminology and Sociology of the Penal System. Currently, she is working on her PhD in Medical Anthropology. She is the Founder Director of Metzineres, the first non-governmental cooperative dedicated to developing sheltered environments for women and diverse gender people who use drugs, surviving violence and multiple situations of vulnerability. She is also an international advisor on drug policy, harm reduction, human rights and gender mainstream, combining research with design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of drug policies, programs and services. She has been working in Spain, USA, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica and around Europe.

Jac Charlier

Executive Director, TASC's Center for Health and Justice

Jac is the Executive Director of TASC’s Center for Health and Justice (CHJ), and Executive Director and co-founder of the Police, Treatment, and Community Collaborative (PTACC). He is a co-founder of the international deflection movement, and works to grow and develop the global field of deflection. In his hometown of Chicago (USA), he is a recognized civic leader having co-founded several successful community initiatives. Jac is an Eagle Scout and US military veteran. He received his master’s degree from The Ohio State University and his BS in mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana.

Naomi Burke-Shyne

Executive Director, Harm Reduction International

Naomi is the Executive Director of Harm Reduction International, a leading NGO dedicated to reducing the negative impacts of drug use and drug policy. Naomi has worked in law, human rights, health and drug policy at national and international level for 18 years.

Rebecca Sycamore

Chief Executive, Toynbee Hall

Rebecca has worked in the field of social justice for over twenty years. She is currently Chief Executive of Toynbee Hall, an east London charity which has been at the forefront of social change for 140 years; currently known for its debt advice, community work and peer led research. Rebecca was previously Executive Director of Strategy and Development at leading homelessness charity St. Mungo’s and has also held positions at Crisis and Homeless Link.

Judy Chang

Executive Director, International Network of People who Use Drugs (INPUD)

Judy has worked in the HIV and community-based health and development field for 15 years. She brings 25 years of lived experience as a woman who uses drugs and a client of harm reduction services to her role. During the course of her work, she has worked in various contexts, such as India, China and Thailand. Judy holds a Master’s in International Development and a Bachelor of Arts in Writing and Contemporary Cultures and has been published in books and peer reviewed journals.

Rick Henderson

CEO, Homeless Link

Rick is CEO of Homeless Link, the national membership body for the homelessness sector in England with over 800 members. Prior to joining Homeless Link in 2012 he was CEO of Action for Advocacy. Rick is a member of the government’s Rough Sleeping Advisory Board and is an active member of Feantsa the European Homelessness network.

Hannah Boyle

Women's Centre Development Lead, Simon Community

Committed to amplifying women’s voices, Hannah works for Simon Community Scotland, Scotland’s largest provider of homelessness services. With a focus on gendered responses within harm reduction, she led the 'A Digital Approach to Harm Reduction' project, resulting in the creation of the award-winning By My Side app. Now leading the development of a new Women’s Centre shaped by the insights and expertise of women to guide and challenge existing systems and promote change.

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