Trading Standards Institute sponsor shortlisted for Inspirational Woman of the Year Award
Marilyn Baldwin, founder and campaigner of anti-scam mail charity Think Jessica, has been shortlisted for ITV Lorraine's Inspirational Woman of the Year Award. The award is a part of the Women of the Year Lunch Award, which seeks to celebrate the outstanding achievements of British women.
Baldwin started the Think Jessica campaign when her mother, Jessica, became inundated with scam mail after she replied to them and was put on a 'suckers list'. Jessica spent the last five years of her life paying out almost £50,000 to scammers posing as lotteries, clairvoyants and solicitors who promised to pay her large sums of cash if she paid up.
After her mother's death, Baldwin found 30,000 scam letters at Jessica's home. Since then Baldwin has dedicated her efforts to preventing mail scams.
Having already received a Trading Standards Institute (TSI) Hero Award in 2009, Think Jessica were the main sponsor of the TSI's Consumer Affairs and Trading Standards Conference and Exhibition 2013.
Trading Standards have a particular interest in protecting elderly and vulnerable people from scam mail, with the National Trading Standards Board (NTSB) funding Scambusters teams to specifically crack down on scammers. In April the first prosecution of its kind in the country and the biggest investigation ever led to a fraudster from Bedford being jailed for orchestrating a series of international mail scams, preying on older people. TSI has supported Think Jessica since it was founded and continues to today.
Leon Livermore, TSI's chief executive, said: "These insidious scammers target those who are most vulnerable, people who need protecting.
"We are proud of our association with Think Jessica and we wish Marilyn the best of luck."
After talking on ITV's Lorraine show on Wednesday 9 October, Marilyn can be voted for on Thursday 10 October. The Inspirational Woman of the Year Award will announce the winners on Monday 14 October.
Notes for Editors:
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Trading Standards Institute (TSI)
TSI is a training and membership organisation that has represented the interests of the Trading Standards profession since 1881 nationally and internationally. We aim to raise the profile of the profession while working towards fairer, better informed and safer consumer and business communities. TSI’s members are engaged in delivering frontline trading standards services in local authorities and in businesses. www.tradingstandards.gov.uk
DATE: 09 October 2013