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Slavery and Forced Labour

Question for Home Office

UIN HL4195, tabled on 12 May 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of COVID-19 on (1) labour exploitation, and (2) modern slavery.

Answered on

28 May 2020

Modern slavery is a harmful and hidden crime and its victims may be especially isolated and vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are committed to protecting those who may be subject to exploitation and modern slavery, during this time.

We are working closely with the police, the National Crime Agency, the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate and Her Majesty’s Revenues and Customs - National Minimum Wage Team to monitor and assess any emerging changes to the threat of modern slavery during the COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure law enforcement activity can respond to the changing environment. We are confident that law enforcement agencies continue to pursue high risk modern slavery cases where there is a risk of harm or detriment to individuals.

In addition, we have taken clear steps to ensure that we continue to support some of the most vulnerable people in our society. To ensure victims continue to feel supported and safe, we announced on 6 April 2020, that all individuals in accommodation provided by the government-funded specialist Modern Slavery Victim Care Contract, will not be required to move on from their accommodation for the next three months.

Answered by

Home Office