Modern slavery is a worldwide phenomenon and expanding. It is growing because of a number of features which feed each other:
- the rise in the number of vulnerable people, in the UK and across the globe
- an increasingly sophisticated criminal network offering false promises and trapping people in situations of brutal exploitation
- an indifference in many of us as to how our goods and services are provided, or by whom. We are concerned about cheap prices, not the welfare of producers.
Modern slavery is a form of exploitation which is often hidden. Without citizens and consumers noticing, suspecting or asking questions, it is very difficult for law-enforcement agencies and businesses to know where to look or how to respond.
The Clewer Initiative invites Christians and all people of goodwill to become proactive and more fully committed to going the extra mile and seeking to notice and respond – whether inviting proper investigation of suspicious behaviours or deals too cheap to be true, or supporting victims, raising awareness and building community resilience.
For Anti-Slavery Day, you are invited to reflect further upon the good news of the Christian faith for disciples, for those in need, and for the ways in which we live worship and pray.
Getting started Read Psalm 23
- What does the Psalmist teach us about the realities of human suffering and sin?
- What does God offer to his children facing such challenges?
- What should be our response?
Read the County Lines Psalm
The gang leader is my shepherd, I shall not ask.
He makes me lie down in unheated flats;
He leads me beside needle-strewn stairwells;
He enslaves my soul.
He leads me down windswept streets
For his own profit.
As I walk down the darkest alley, I feel evil;
For he is with me;
My phone and my stash,
they cling to me.
He prepares every deal for me in the presence of my enemies;
My head it drips with sweat;
My water bottle is empty.
Surely ruthlessness and cruelty shall stalk me
All the days of my life,
And I shall live in an unfurnished home
My whole short life.
- What does the County Lines Psalm teach us about the realities of human suffering and sin – especially as manifested through modern slavery?
- What kind of witness does God desire his church to make in the midst of these realities?
- What should be our responses today? Make a list of what could be achieved by your group.