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Researchers helping police tackle modern slavery

Academics at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) are helping police and charities to tackle modern slavery.

DMU is a partner in the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Modern Slavery Action Group which is supporting a new campaign launched today by Leicestershire Police.

The campaign aims to raise awareness of the signs of modern slavery and what to do. Modern slavery is exploitative behaviour that places one person in control of another. It can affect people of any age, gender or race.


However, most commonly, slavery affects people and communities who are vulnerable to being taken advantage of.

Laura Pajon, VC2020 researcher at Leicester De Montfort Law School, co-ordinates the action group. She said: “We are absolutely full square behind this campaign where we work with partners across Leicester, Leicestershire, and Rutland to respond to modern slavery."

The action group helped develop the police campaign, which urges people to recognise signs that could indicate someone is at risk.  Long labour hours, chaperoning, lack of personal possessions, malnutrition, and abuse are the main areas identified as part of the #KnowTheSigns tag line, which police hope will alert people to come forward with information surrounding the issue of modern day slavery.

Detective Superintendent at Leicestershire Police, Matt Ditcher, said: “It is really important that we address modern slavery. Unfortunately, there are people out there who take advantage and exploit other people. Modern slavery is a very broad topic, but can often be seen in three main areas: labour and employment, human trafficking and sexual exploitation.

“We hope that by identifying five, really key signs of modern slavery, it will make more people aware of what could be going on around them on a regular basis in day-to-day life.

“I would absolutely encourage anybody who thinks that they have spotted the common signs that we have identified as part of Modern Slavery, to come forward and bring it to the attention of the Modern Slavery Helpline by calling 08000 121 700 or by reporting online.

Police and Crime Commissioner, Lord Willy Bach, said: “It is shocking that in 2019 slavery in any form is still flourishing in this country. We must do everything we can to help those who are being forced into a lifestyle of servile misery for the financial benefit of others.

“We must encourage those affected to seek support and we must ensure that the public know what to look for and how to report it if they suspect anything is wrong.”

For more information on modern slavery, visit any of the following websites:
Leicestershire Police

Posted on Wednesday 26th June 2019

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