Stop Modern Slavery
This campaign seeks to raise awareness of modern slavery in the UK. It also calls for better support for survivors, as well as more effective action to eradicate the problem.
Given the ongoing restrictions on meetings and campaigning activity, the NFWI will not be producing campaigns materials to our usual timetable. Instead, we will first focus on ways that members can learn more about the issues raised by the resolution with a full campaign pack to follow later.
Modern slavery is a complex crime that takes a number of different forms. It encompasses slavery, servitude, forced and compulsory labour and human trafficking. Traffickers and slave drivers coerce, deceive and force individuals against their will into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment. Victims may be sexually exploited, forced to work for little or no pay or forced to commit criminal activities against their will.
The true extent of modern slavery in the UK and globally is unknown, but the best estimates suggest that there are around 40 million victims worldwide. The UK government estimates that there are tens of thousands of people in slavery in the UK today.
Modern slavery crimes are being committed across the UK and are taking place in many different sectors including factories, fields, brothels, nail bars and even within people’s homes. There is no typical victim of slavery – victims can be men, women or children of all ages and nationalities. According to the Salvation Army, the number of UK victims who had been enslaved through labour exploitation rose by 63% between July 2018 and June 2019.
How you can get involved
1. Learn about the signs of modern slavery. According to the Salvation Army, you could come into contact with a victim of modern slavery without even realising. The signs aren’t always easy to spot and not all of these will apply in every case, but there are several key indicators to keep in mind. These include in relation to a person’s physical appearance (untreated injuries or appearing withdrawn for example), working conditions, behaviour, accommodation, finances and level of freedom (for example they may show signs that their movements are being controlled or have no access to medical care).
If you are interested in finding out more visit:
- The Gangmasters & Labour Abuse Authority website: https://www.gla.gov.uk/who-we-are/modern-slavery/who-we-are-modern-slavery-spot-the-signs/
- Unseen UK: https://www.unseenuk.org/learn-more/general/spot-the-signs
- The Salvation Army:https://www.salvationarmy.org.uk/modern-slavery/spot-signs
- The Royal College of Nursing:https://www.rcn.org.uk/clinical-topics/modern-slavery
2. Report suspected cases of modern slavery. Members of the public can report suspicions or concerns about individuals, premises or locations in a number of ways. Please do not confront the situation yourself as this may lead to increased harm for them and put you at risk. Instead, report it to the relevant authority or organisation.
You can contact:
- The Modern Slavery Helpline by calling 08000 121 700. This number is free to call and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Alternatively, you can use an online form available at https://www.modernslaveryhelpline.org/report.
- The GLAA (the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority) which investigates all aspects of labour exploitation in England and Wales - 0800 432 0804 or 0115 959 7052 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- The Police - 101, or if you believe someone to be at immediate risk - 999
- Crimestoppers - 0800 555 111
First responders (if you work for a designated organisation such as the police, Home Office, a local authority or health and social care trust) can report modern slavery via the following online service: https://www.modernslavery.gov.uk/start
3. Share your experiences with us. If you have encountered modern slavery in your community or have reported concerns, please do get in touch to share your experiences with us. With your permission, stories that are shared with us may be used anonymously as part of our policy and campaigning work in NFWI Public Affairs resources, WI Life, the WI websites and on our social media channels. Please email email@example.com
If you suspect modern slavery, please contact the relevant authority first.
Find out more about modern slavery
- For an explanation of modern slavery, visit the websites of organisations such as Unseen UK (www.unseenuk.org/modern-slavery/modern-slavery) and Haven of Light (www.havenoflight.co.uk/copy-of-about-us)
- For more data on the nature and extent of modern slavery in the UK, take a look at the latest ONS report (published in March 2020): www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/crimeandjustice/articles/modernslaveryintheuk/march2020
- To find out more about the signs of modern slavery, how to report it, and sources of support visit the Met Police website: www.met.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/ms/modern-slavery/
- For more details on the UK Government’s approach to modern slavery, download the Modern Slavery Statement: www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-government-modern-slavery-statement
To support WI members to get involved with the campaign, the NFWI Public Affairs Team has produced a range of resources which can be found on this page.