Modern slavery – what do you know?

Latest news in Yorkshire: July 06, 2017 10:49:39 AM

Slavery, often thought to be confined to the dark depths of history is sadly still happening today, it’s just hidden in plain sight.

As part of our modern slavery campaign, we’ve been issuing posts and videos about modern slavery, to give you more information about exactly what it is and to provide you with the knowledge to spot the signs you’re most likely to see in everyday life.

Detective Sergeant Nikki Leach, who heads up the force’s Anti-Slavery Unit, said: “Victims of modern slavery can often be difficult to identify, because those signs are so hidden.

“For example, we know that people who are being exploited through labour often work at car washes or nail bars, and have previously told us that they have been forced to work long, hard hours for little or no money. People use these facilities every day and may not be aware that the workers may be potential victims.”
The force’s modern slavery campaign, which has been running for the past seven weeks, has focused on two strands of modern slavery; sexual exploitation and labour exploitation.

DS Leach added: “The role of the Anti-Slavery Unit is to build up an in-depth intelligence picture surrounding potential offenders and situations where vulnerable people may be being exploited.

“Throughout the campaign we have carried out several operations to identify potential victims of modern slavery and any perpetrators.

“This involved an operation at several car washes in Rotherham, as well as an operation in Doncaster, in which four men were arrested on suspicion of modern slavery offences.

“However it’s important to note that modern slavery isn’t confined purely to labour and sexual exploitation.

“People can also be victims of modern slavery through domestic servitude and other criminal activities, such as people who are forced to work in a cannabis cultivation set-up.

“Our work to highlight the issues of modern slavery, identify potential vulnerable victims, safeguard them and develop the intelligence picture surrounding offenders continues, and we’d always ask anyone with concerns to phone us straight away.

“You can also contact the Modern Slavery Helpline on 0800 0121700. To look back over everything published during the campaign, please visit our website or search #ModernSlavery on social media, so you can read more about the signs to look out for and how you can help us to identify and protect potential victims.”

For more information on Modern Slavery, please visit our dedicated webpage southyorks.police.uk/modernslavery.

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