Do you know the signs of modern day slavery?

Modern slavery and human trafficking is happening all around us in industries such as takeaways and restaurants, nail bars and factories.

How do we identify what is modern slavery and human trafficking?

In 2017, there were 5,145 potential victims of modern slavery, within the UK, referred to the National Referral Mechanism (NRM). The NRM is the framework for identifying and referring potential victims of modern slavery making sure they receive support. There could be many more potential victims, both adults and children, within our communities who are exploited every day.

How can we raise awareness?

The 18 October is Anti-Slavery Day; a day which provides the opportunity to raise awareness of modern slavery, including human trafficking.

How are people exploited?

People of all ages may be exploited for different reasons, the most common are:

  • Sexual exploitation
  • Labour exploitation/ forced labour
  • Forced criminality
  • Organ harvesting
  • Domestic servitude
  • Debt bondage

Other forms are:

  • Forced marriage
  • Financial exploitation

Can you spot the signs?

  • Does the individual look malnourished? Unkempt? Agitated? Are they withdrawn? Anxious?
  • Does the individual appear to be under the control of others? Are they always with someone else?
  • Are they in a relationship which doesn’t seem right – a teenager appearing to be the boyfriend/ girlfriend of a much older adult?
  • Is the individual living in accommodation which is dirty? Cramped? Overcrowded? Do they appear to work at the same place they are living?
  • Does the individual know where they live? Do they have their own ID documents? Do they have access to their own money? Bank accounts?

These could all be signs that someone has been trafficked and are victims of modern slavery.

What is our role in tackling modern slavery?

We play a key role in tackling modern slavery. It can be separated into four areas:

  • identification and referral of victims
  • supporting victims
  • community safety services and disruption activities
  • making sure that the supply chains we procure from are free from modern slavery.

How do we do it?

Safer Kirklees works with partners such as police, health, housing, businesses and voluntary organisations to tackle modern slavery. The approach centres on early intervention and prevention.

Information from communities and frontline staff is key. Do you ever see anything you have a gut feeling about? Something which doesn’t appear right?

How can I report my concerns?

You can ring:

The Modern Slavery Helpline: 08000 121 700

The police on 999 if you feel as though someone is in immediate danger.

You can also report concerns via the Modern Slavery Helpline website or email

Where can I learn more?

Safer Kirklees works in partnership with West Yorkshire Police to provide awareness raising sessions for anyone who works or volunteers within Kirklees.

Details of the current training sessions can be found here.



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