This brief guide to identifying migrant workers who may be being exploited has been provided by Devon and Cornwall Police, the first force to set up a dedicated team to tackle this problem. We are grateful to Steve Edser of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly (CIOS) Migrant Worker Team for his help.

Ascension Trust and Street Pastors are committed to working in partnership with other agencies for the safety and well-being of individuals in the night-time economy and in our communities generally. These partnerships take some well-known forms – with emergency services, NHS triage units, door staff and club managers – but there are others that are less well recognised and may need to develop as social trends and economic conditions change. The increase in human trafficking in the UK is one such example.

What is human trafficking?

The acquisition of people by improper means such as force, fraud or deception, with the aim of exploiting them.

Street pastors should be aware of the possible signs of human trafficking and exploitation. The CIOS team say that street pastors may be the first point of contact for trafficked people and are likely to be more approachable than a police officer.

A person who is trafficked or exploited may be someone who:

  • has a poor standard of health and well-being;
  • doesn’t hold their own travel or ID documents;
  • does not know where in the country they are;
  • indicates that they have been threatened with violence;
  • does not speak for themselves (victims are subservient), but allows someone else to speak for them;
  • is known to be working but has no money and may be looking for handouts or stealing food;
  • someone who indicates that they are working but not being paid;
  • lives at the same address as numerous other people;
  • gives next-of-kin details as someone other than a relative.

Coordinators, thank you for reading this. Please pass on the information to your teams if you feel that it is appropriate.