Modern Slavery

Calling Staffordshire Businesses!

Currently, only businesses with a turnover exceeding £36m are required by law to ensure their supply chain is free from slavery but we can all play a part. We’re calling on all businesses to show their support for an end to this appalling crime.

Sign the pledge and help end the misery of modern day slavery.

You can download the pledge HERE along with images that support the campaign.

Modern slavery victims can be men, women and children but it is most common amongst the 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.

In March 2015, The Modern Slavery Act became law which ensured law enforcement has stronger powers, perpetrators receive suitable severe punishment and victims are better protected and supported.

On December 10, 2015, a conference arranged by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner was held in Stafford to highlight the hidden threat of modern slavery and to raise awareness.

The conference, aimed at professionals and local businesses, was attended by 500 people and took
place at the Staffordshire County Showground.

Speakers included Paul Broadbent, Chief Executive of the Gangmasters Licensing Authority, a survivor of child sexual exploitation as well as other speakers from organisations who work to highlight and tackle Modern Slavery.

Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Arnold, who is spearheading an awareness campaign, on behalf of PCC Matthew Ellis, about the illegal exploitation of people, said: “Modern day slavery is still happening across the UK and Staffordshire is not exempt. It is estimated 29.8 million people around the world are currently affected and it is an issue which we all need to face.

“Modern slavery can take many forms including the trafficking of people, forced labour, servitude and slavery.

“The conference highlight the risks of slavery, people trafficking and forced labour to local businesses and professionals as well as explaining the signs to look out for.”

Staffordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis said: “Victims, no matter what they are
the victims of, are at the centre of our thinking and work we are doing.

“Modern slavery is an abhorrent crime which is often hidden in plain sight. It’s happening across the UK and it’s happening in Staffordshire, although we do not know the scale, big or small, of it here. It’s important that we understand that fact as soon as possible and work is going on to make sure that happens.”

Supporting victims and witnesses is one of four key priorities in the Staffordshire Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis’ Safer, Fairer United Communities strategy for more local and effective policing in the county.

The new Staffordshire Victim Gateway was launched at the start of September to put the needs of victims and witnesses at the heart of the criminal justice system. Information is available at www.staffsvictimsgateway.org.uk or by ringing 0330 0881 339.

Slavery is closer than you think. It happens all over the world including the UK. Find out more at www.modernslavery.co.uk or call the helpline on 0800 0121 700.

Presentations from the Modern Slavery conference are available here.