Campaign Targets Modern Day Slavery In UK

The Government has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the growing problem of modern day slavery in Britain.

Last year 1,746 potential victims of trafficking were identified in the UK, a 47% increase on the figure for 2012.

As part of the campaign, a TV advert shows actors in the kind of squalid conditions that victims are forced to live in.

Checks at airports have also been stepped up with border force officers trained to identify passengers who could be being brought into the country to be treated as slaves.

At Manchester Airport a team of officers targeted a flight arriving from Krakow in Poland.

By looking at the passenger profiles they had concerns about eight young women on board.

Senior border force officer Bryan McNeill told Sky News: “Primarily we’re looking for people travelling alone, first time visitors to the United Kingdom.

“Perhaps they’re coming for a job but they have very little information relating to the job – they don’t know where it is, they don’t know who the person is they’re going to be working for, someone else has paid for their ticket perhaps, so there’s a whole host of indicators that we look for.

“All our guys are trained here to spot these indicators and we have a specialist safeguarding team who can then take things much further should they need to.”

As the passengers arrived through passport control some were led to a side room to be asked further questions.

One couple raised suspicions because the woman was much younger than the man.

Eventually officers were satisfied that no one on board that flight was at risk but extra checks are now regularly being carried out at Heathrow and Gatwick, as well as Manchester.

Many victims do not realise they will be forced into sex or slave labour until it is too late.

If an individual is considered to be at risk officers arrange for them to be taken from the airport to a safe house to protect them from whoever has attempted to traffic them into the UK.

Home Office minister Karen Bradley told Sky News it can be difficult to identify victims once they are in the country.

She said: “They are kept worse than animals in a state that I don’t think any of us can imagine.”

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31 July 2014 | 12:11 am – Source:

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