Cambridgeshire business can learn how to spot modern slavery at police workshop

Businesses across Cambridgeshire are being encouraged to attend a one-day workshop raising awareness of how to spot the signs of modern slavery.

Tuesday, 10th December 2019, 11:54 am
Police

The workshop has been organised by Cambridgeshire Constabulary’s Victim and Witness Hub, which recently celebrated its fifth anniversary, and takes place on 10 January.

Its aim is to raise awareness of modern day slavery among employees at local businesses - particularly factories, banks and recruitment agencies – as well as offering advice on how to spot possible victims and report any concerns.

Speakers at the event include police officers, representatives from the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA), the Stronger Together initiative, registered charity Stop the Traffik and company auditor Verisio Ltd.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Daniela Dumitrache, specialist victim care co-ordinator at the witness hub, said: “No business is free from the risk of modern slavery or human trafficking.

“High-risk sectors include those whose businesses and UK supply chains are characterised by a high proportion of migrant workers undertaking unskilled and irregular work.

“By the end of the workshop it is hoped businesses will have a strong understanding of what modern day slavery, human trafficking and labour exploitation is.

“As well as this, it is hoped staff at these businesses will be able to recognise the signs that someone may be a victim of modern slavery and know how to access support from the Victim and Witness Hub.”

Refreshments and lunch will be provided and the event is free. Anyone interested is urged to reserve a space early to avoid disappointment.

Detective Superintendent Rebecca Tipping, the force strategic lead for modern slavery and human trafficking, said: “Victims of modern day slavery and human trafficking are often forced into work or other services against their will and moved from location to location.

“This is regularly under threat of violence or some other form of punishment. The signs of modern day slavery and human trafficking can often be hard to spot – but being able to recognise them may help save someone’s life.

“We are working hard to tackle modern day slavery, but we can’t do it alone. If anyone has any concerns, no matter how small, we’d urge them to get in touch.”

Warning signs of modern slavery or exploitation include people:

-being fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, nervous or paranoid

-avoiding eye contact

-lacking health care

-appearing malnourished

-showing signs of physical or sexual abuse, physical restraint or torture

-having few or no personal possessions

-not being in control of their own money, bank account or identification documents e.g. passport or ID

-not being able to speak for themselves

-not wanting to explain where they are living

-having a lack of knowledge of where they are

-having no sense of time

-having inconsistencies in their story

Suspicions relating to exploitation, modern slavery and human trafficking should be reported online via www.cambs.police.uk/report or by calling 101. Always call 999 in an emergency.

Concerns can also be reported to the confidential 24/7 Modern Slavery Helpline on 08000 121700 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.