Gypsies and Travellers

Get support to access education, healthcare and fire safety advice

We offer Gypsy and Traveller communities support to access education, healthcare and fire safety advice.

Help to access education

We can help your child to access education and have the best possible experience at school. We support Gypsy and Traveller children and young people who:

  • arrive from other areas
  • need help with school transfers or transition
  • are new to schooling
  • travel seasonally for work

We can help by:

  • arranging for you and your child to visit schools and going along to support
  • helping you to secure a school place for your child for a short period of time if your family travels for work
  • supporting your child to settle into a new school
  • supporting you and your child if they experience bullying at school
  • supporting you to apply for school transport and free school meals
  • supporting you with school-based distance learning, helping your child continue education through the travelling season while staying in touch with the base school
  • visiting you to monitor distance learning and give advice

Starting school

Please note, when your child starts school, you’ll be asked to complete a form about their ethnic background. It’s important to choose the category that best describes your culture and values so that:

  • teachers can link your child’s home experience to their work in school
  • staff in your child’s school can learn about your culture
  • schools, the Department for Education and the local authority can check that every child is being treated fairly
  • the school can take extra care if they know your child may be at a higher risk of being bullied

Help to access healthcare

Gypsy and Traveller communities experience significant health inequalities and issues in accessing health services. Our outreach team is working with NHS and Public Health to make the most relevant health and social care information and services more accessible to communities. We do this through our specialist outreach and referral services.

We offer support with:

  • registering with the doctor and dentist
  • accessing primary immunisations and flu jabs
  • accessing treatment for long-term conditions
  • healthy eating and stopping smoking
  • accessing antenatal care

Contact us if you’d like help to access any health service, and we’ll arrange for one of our experienced outreach team members to visit you.

Help to access fire safety advice

We work with Essex Fire and Rescue to give fire safety advice and support to Gypsy and Traveller communities. Our outreach team is trained by Essex Fire and Rescue. We’ve worked closely with Gypsy and Traveller communities for many years, visiting sites and homes to give advice on fire safety, including issuing smoke alarms.

If you’d like to book a FREE home or site fire safety visit, or to request a copy of our Fire Safety for Gypsies and Travellers guide, please contact us.

Contact the Essex Countywide Traveller Unit (ECTU)

Tel: 0345 6037624 (and choose option 3, 'all other enquiries')
Email: ectu@essex.gov.uk

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