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Slavery: Victims

Question for Home Office

UIN HL108, tabled on 11 May 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the statement in the Home Office press release 'Alarming rise of abuse within modern slavery system', published on 20 March, that “Our generous safeguards for victims are being rampantly abused by child rapists, people who pose a threat to national security and failed asylum seekers with no right to be here”, how many people that took advantage of the modern slavery safeguards in each of the last five years fit the profiles described.

Answered on

25 May 2021

We are committed to ensuring victims of modern slavery are identified quickly and provided with the support they require to start to rebuild their lives.

In March 2021, the Government published a report on issues raised by people in immigration detention. This provides data on some of the concerns we are seeking to address through the New Plan for Immigration. This is available at: Issues raised by people facing return in immigration detention - GOV.UK (

There are concerns about the potential for a referral to the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) to be used to frustrate Immigration Enforcement processes or to gain access to support inappropriately.

For example, there has been a growth in NRM referrals being made after a person enters immigration detention. In 2019, 16% of people detained within the UK following immigration offences were referred as potential victims of modern slavery. This is up from just 3% in 2017.

This raises legitimate concerns that some referrals are being made late in the process to frustrate immigration action and that legitimate referrals are not being made in a timely way. The New Plan for Immigration will address both concerns.

Answered by

Home Office