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Human Trafficking & Modern Slavery

Slavery is not an issue confined to history or an issue that only exists in certain countries – it is something that is still happening today.

More than 200 years after the abolition of the slave trade there are still an estimated 40.3 million men, women and children trapped in modern slavery, and up to 136,000 potential victims in the UK alone.

It is a growing issue, affecting men, women and children. It is a problem that transcends age, gender and ethnicity, and can impact both foreign nationals and British citizens.


The Clewer Initiative is enabling Church of England dioceses and wider Church networks to develop strategies to detect modern slavery in their communities and help provide victim support and care.

If you spot the signs call the Modern Slavery Helpline:

0800 0121 700

If someone is in immediate danger call the police on 999

To report concerns about labour exploitation call the GLAA on 0800 432 0804

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Homelessness, Trafficking & Slavery

Homeless people are at particular risk of modern slavery. They are being targeted at drop-ins, winter night shelters, and on the streets.

In the last two years, the Modern Slavery Helpline has had reports of 353 potential victims who were homeless before, during, or after being exploited.

There are many causes for homelessness, ranging from family break-ups, to unemployment, personal crises, and mental health. Homeless people living on the street, and those in temporary accommodation, are vulnerable to being exploited by perpetrators of slavery who can offer incentives that sound attractive.


Many of these perpetrators are part of national or global gangs, operating in different parts of the country, which means they can move slaves from town to town to avoid detection and isolate the slaves further from potential networks of help.

Victims of modern slavery may also become homeless after escaping from their traffickers because they are unable or don’t know how to access support.

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