Modern slavery is all around us, often hidden in plain sight — and anyone can be a target. But some people can be at more risk because of money, social or health issues, or because of their age or immigration status.
People can become enslaved serving our food, picking our crops, working in factories, working in houses as cooks, cleaners or nannies, or forced to commit crimes.
Threats and punishments can often be violent, but not always. They can include threatening to tell the authorities about the victim's immigration status to get them deported from the country.
Modern slavery includes human trafficking. This is when victims are taken between countries or around a country so they can be exploited.
If you have concerns that someone is being exploited, or suspect modern slavery/human trafficking, report it online or call 08000 121 700 (National 24h Helpline).
The specialist helpline is confidential and independent, with access to translation services for over 200 languages.
In an emergency, call 999.
Learn how to spot the signs
Someone in slavery might:
- Appear to be under the control of someone else and reluctant to interact with others
- Appear frightened, withdrawn, or show signs of physical or psychological abuse
- Have someone with them at all times or they’re not allowed to speak for themselves
- Not have Passport and ID documents, or they are held by someone else
- Be reluctant to talk to strangers or to the authorities
- Live in dirty, cramped or overcrowded accommodation
- Live and work at the same address
- Fear deportation or violence to themselves/their family
The city council as a first responder
Norwich City Council is a first responder organisation which is authorised to refer potential victims of modern slavery into the National Referral Mechanism (NRM). Our role is to identify and refer potential victims of modern slavery into support, where appropriate.
Find out more
For more information visit the Norfolk Anti-slavery Network website.