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Modern Slavery

Modern Slavery is a term that covers slavery, servitude, human trafficking and forced labour.

Slavery did not end with abolition, and still exists in the UK today. Those in slavery today are most commonly vulnerable people forced to work in the sex industry or in compulsory labour.

Slavery and Human Trafficking are not by any means exclusively reserved for foreign nationals, in fact, many UK nationals are victims.

Below you can find out more about Modern Slavery, Human Trafficking and what Staffs Police are doing to fight it. You can also find out the different ways you can report Modern Slavery, if you are a victim yourself, or if you know someone who is a victim.

If you, or someone you know, is a victim of Modern Slavery or Human Trafficking, please report it immediately to either Staffordshire Police on 101 or anonymously to Crimestoppers through their online form, or their helpline 0800 555 111

Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is the movement of a person from one place to another into conditions of exploitation. It is possible to be a victim of trafficking even if your consent has been given to being moved.

The victim can find themselves in a foreign country where they may not speak the language well, may not have any relevant documents and are too frightened to go to authorities even if they are able to escape.

Human trafficking, including the trafficking of children, is often involved in Modern Slavery but not always.

The Act of Trafficking (what is done):

  • Recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons.

The Means (how it is done):

  • Threat or use of force
  • coercion
  • abduction
  • fraud
  • deception
  • abuse of power or vulnerability
  • or giving payments or benefits to a person in control of the victim

The Purpose (why it is done):

For the purpose of exploitation, which includes:

  • exploiting prostitution of others
  • sexual exploitation
  • forced labour
  • slavery or similar practices and the removal of organs or body tissue.

Methods used by traffickers to encourage victims include:

  • Psychological and physical abuse, including rape
  • false employment offers
  • idea of a better quality of life
  • threats
  • abduction
  • deception

Some of the instances victims may find themselves subject to include:

  • Poverty
  • limited social contact
  • lack of education
  • passports or documents held by someone else
  • no days off or holiday time
  • limited contact with family
  • lack of access to earnings and medical care

Trafficking is not an immigration crime

Trafficking is a crime against a person

Immigration crime is a crime against the State


If you suspect someone may be at risk of Modern Slavery telephone 101 to report it to us, or if someone is in immediate danger always call 999.

Click here to view Modern Slavery Leaflet [3MB]

Click here to view UK Slavery Infographic [809KB]

How to Report Modern Slavery

If you suspect someone may be at risk of Modern Slavery telephone 101 to report it to us, or if someone is in immediate danger always call 999.

You can also report any crime anonymously via Crimestoppers. Click here to use their online form, or if English isn't your main language, they recommend you call them on 0800 555 111.

Human Trafficking Definitions

HUMAN TRAFFICKING - movement of a person from one place to another, within a country or across borders, into conditions of exploitation against their will. An Action the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of a person. A means the threat or use of force or other form of coercion, abduction, fraud, deception, abuse of power, a position of vulnerability, giving or receiving of payments or benefits to control a person for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation which can include slavery, forced labour or services, servitude, forces criminality, sexual exploitation or the removal of organs.

CHILD TRAFFICKING - Young people (under 18) moved either internationally or domestically so they can be exploited.

DEBT BONDAGE - Victims forced to work to pay off debts that realistically they never will be able to pay. Low wages and increased debts mean not only that they cannot ever hope to pay off the loan, but the debt may be passed down to their children and other family members.

FORCED LABOUR - Victims forced to work against their will, often working very long hours for little or no pay in dire conditions under verbal or physical threats of violence to them or their families. It can happen in many sectors of our economy, from agriculture to mining to tarmacking, hospitality and food packaging. There used to be perception that trafficking was only for sexual exploitation. Now labour exploitation is becoming recognised as a serious, pervasive and increasing issue within the UK.

SEXUAL EXPLOITATION - Victims forced to perform non-consensual or abusive sexual acts against their will, such as prostitution in brothels, massage parlours, above shops, in escort work and pornography. Whilst women and children make up the majority of victims, men can also be affected. Adults are coerced often under the threat of force, or another penalty.

CRIMINAL EXPLOITATION - Often controlled and maltreated, victims are forced into crimes such as cannabis cultivation, benefit fraud, stealing, pick pocketing or begging against their will. There are cases where parents move their children to the UK and train them to steal. In some cultures the art of stealing is revered, and the child wants to do it. There is no coercion/deception. However, under the Palermo Principle it is still human trafficking because a child is involved and a child cannot consent to such activities.

DOMESTIC SERVITUDE - Victims are forced to carry out housework, domestic chores and looking after children in private households with little or no pay, restricted movement, very limited or no free time and minimal privacy often sleeping where they work. Often cut off from the outside world, they may be allowed to go shopping or to pick up children from school.

ORGAN HARVESTING - Although there have been no convictions or recorded cases of organ harvesting in the UK, we believe it does still occur.

FORCED MARRIAGE & FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION - Victims forced to marry someone against their will, sometimes for the purposes of gaining citizenship for the person they marry and sometimes for other reasons, or females forced to undergo painful and dangerous procedures on their genitalia for no medical reason whatsoever.

Partners Against Modern Slavery

Here is a list of our partners who are fighting Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking.

You can also call modernslavery.co.uk's hotline on 0800 0121 700.