What is Anti-Slavery Day?
This day provides an opportunity for us to raise awareness of modern slavery and human trafficking and to encourage the government, companies, shops and individuals to do what they can in the fight against modern slavery.
Anti-slavery day may only happen once a year but people are suffering 24/7 365 days a year.
What is Human Trafficking?
Human trafficking is the control and exploitation of vulnerable people and these people can be exploited in all manner of ways, such as; forced labour, sexual exploitation, forced criminal activity, domestic servitude, sham marriages and organ removal. Shockingly, human trafficking is the fastest growing international crime and the second largest source of illegal income worldwide.
What is Modern Slavery?
Unfortunately slavery has existed in all societies across the world throughout history, the difference now is that slavery is illegal in every country. However, despite this fact, slavery still continues today in forms of child labour and human trafficking.
An enslaved person is usually forced to work via mental or physical threats, is dehumanised and bought and sold like an object, can be physically restrained or have restrictions placed on their freedom, and they receive either little or no pay for their work. Child soldiers and early and forced marriages are also a form of modern slavery.
It is estimated that between 21 million to 45 million people are held in modern slavery around the world today.
What can you do?
Because of the hidden and secretive nature of these crimes, talk to your friends and family and take responsibility for raising awareness about modern slavery. Be aware that cases of modern slavery often occur at car washes, construction sites, in agricultural industries and in food processing. If you suspect a problem it is vital that you take action and report it so that these degrading and exploitive crimes are dealt with and the victims receive support.
How to recognise the signs of Modern Slavery
- Victims may look unkempt, malnourished, seem withdrawn or show signs of physical or psychological abuse
- They may rarely interact with other people, appear unfamiliar with the neighbourhood or place of work, rarely be allowed to travel independently
- Victims may live in dirty, overcrowded conditions or live and work at the same address
- Victims may wear the same clothes each day or not have suitable clothes for their work, have few if any personal possessions and have little opportunity to move independently
- They may avoid eye contact, seem frightened or reluctant to talk to strangers as they don’t’ know who to trust or may fear violence to themselves or their family
If you suspect a problem you can contact:
- Modern Slavery Helpline 08000 121700 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week)
- Crimestoppers (to pass on information anonymously) 0800 555111