Modern day slavery
Modern slavery takes many different forms but in the UK these fall into four main categories:
- Sexual exploitation
- Labour exploitation
- Domestic servitude
- Criminal exploitation
Slavery is not an issue confined to history or happening elsewhere. It is something which happens today and is happening in Staffordshire.
Modern slavery is a crime that can happen anywhere but it is often hidden. You could come into contact with a victim of slavery without even realising it. We can all play a role in ending this terrible crime by being vigilant, particularly when goods or services appear to be very cheap. Those cheap prices might be an indicator of slave labour.
Modern slavery is where one person uses control to force another into a service against their will - usually forced work or prostitution. The control can be physical, financial or psychological. Human trafficking is a form of slavery where victims are transported with the aim of exploiting them. Traffickers and slave masters use whatever means they have at their disposal to coerce, deceive and force individuals into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment. Some cases involve UK-born people being trafficked within the UK from one town to another.
It can affect anyone, however slavery most commonly targets people and communities who are vulnerable and within minority or socially excluded groups. Approximately two-thirds of victims are women, and a third are men. Every fourth victim of modern slavery is a child.
There are an estimated 13,000 people in slavery in the UK today. Slavery’s hidden nature means actual numbers are likely to be much higher.
The Modern Slavery Act 2015 consolidated existing slavery and trafficking offences, and introduced other measures aimed at tackling slavery and ensuring perpetrators receive suitable severe punishment and victims are better protected and supported.