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Using your voice and your vote

19th March 2024 | From our team

The Clewer Initiative

It is time to challenge Police and Crime Commissioner and Mayoral candidates to make modern slavery a priority.

The general population will head to the polls on Thurs 2nd May to elect 10 metro mayors and 39 Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC). The metro mayors control upwards of £25bn of public spending and the PCCs make sure that the local police in their area are meeting the needs of the community.

Caroline Virgo, director of The Clewer Initiative, comments: “This is an important moment in the life of our country, particularly against a backdrop of a cost-of-living crisis and public sector spending cuts. Sadly, as the number of vulnerable people in our society increases, the investment in modern slavery prevention, first responders, modern slavery intelligence and survivor care is decreasing. There are many competing voices and modern slavery could easily be overlooked at a time when it needs more attention than ever.”

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A recent report on Human Trafficking from the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee highlighted that the introduction of the Nationality and Borders Act and the Illegal Migration Act has resulted in support for survivors of modern slavery diminishing. It noted that “the fight against human trafficking is, in practice, no longer a priority for the UK Government.” It then recommended that “all Police and Crime Commissioners should actively consider setting modern slavery and human trafficking as a priority in their police and crime plans.”

In the lead up to the election, we would urge you to write to local candidates and highlight the role they have in fighting modern slavery in this country. If you attend any hustings, please ask a question about prioritising modern slavery.

The next month provides us with an opportunity to challenge and inform our community leaders about modern slavery. Use your voice!

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