Pan-Lancashire Anti-Slavery PartnershipDate posted: 8th February 2024
"Thursday 8th February is a day to remember the Patron Saint of human trafficking and slavery, St Josephine Bakhita, who was kidnapped and sold into slavery as a young child in the late 1800s. Sadly this horrendous crime is still prevalent today in the form of Human Trafficking & Modern Slavery.
Modern Slavery can take many forms, including sexual exploitation, forced criminality, domestic servitude, organ harvesting and significantly, forced labour. It is very much a hidden crime but estimates suggest 50 million people globally and over 100,000 people across the UK are being held in some form of slavery. Modern Slavery is often coordinated by Organised Crime Groups who generate huge amounts of wealth at the expense of those who are being exploited. This crime treats its victims as commodities to be bought, sold or deceived into a life of hardship and misery.
We know that a significant number of those being forced into this life are within the business sector through the use of forced labour. This may take the form of unscrupulous companies who are directly implicit in this act, however, often, it is found within the supply chains and recruitment processes of legitimate companies. The methods employed by the perpetrators are many, but the common factor is that they will look to control the victim through fear, deceit or by exploiting any vulnerabilities they may have (e.g., Language barriers, addictions or mental health issues).
We are seeking your help to fight back and reduce the opportunities for Modern Slavery to flourish across Lancashire and beyond, which is why we are asking you to join us in taking our #PLEDGE. We have created a list of simple actions that businesses or groups, both large and small, could do to help raise awareness of Modern Slavery and to help to prevent it.
We can supply links to many free high-quality resources, which include posters, training products and advice.
In order to join the #PLEDGE, we ask that you commit to as many of the actions as you feel appropriate for your business and then just let us know of your support via Linked In #PLEDGE, X (Twitter) @PLASPsupport or via the link https://forms.office.com/e/kEhZwuU9V2."
Sion Hall, Chair Pan Lancashire Anti Slavery Partnership