Modern slavery crimes are being committed across the UK, taking place in factories, fields, brothels and even in homes. There is no typical victim of slavery – victims can be men, women or children of all ages and nationalities.
Someone is in slavery if they are forced to work; owned or controlled by an 'employer'; dehumanised; treated as a commodity or property; or have restrictions placed on their freedom of movement.
Modern slavery is a largely covert crime: victims tend to be controlled and hidden away.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 states that:
"No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms"
If you suspect someone is a victim of modern slavery, there are a number of agencies you can call:
- the police on 101
- Hope for Justice | End Slavery. Change Lives.
- the Salvation Army 24 hour confidential helpline
- the Modern Slavery helpline
In addition, there are a number of apps which can be downloaded onto a smart phone to collate information about suspected modern day slavery:
The Safe Car Wash app is designed to be used by someone going to get their car washed. Download the free app onto your smartphone. When you are using a hand car wash, simply open the app and complete a short survey about the working conditions of the car wash. The app will then ask a series of questions and use the answers to assess the likelihood of the modern slavery being present. The user is then provided with information about how to log their concerns and the data gathered is collated centrally to be assessed by law enforcement investigating modern slavery.
Unseen app provides information about the possible signs of modern day slavery and includes a contact form for reporting yours suspicions or to get support. The app can be found by searching ‘unseen’ in your app store.