modern slavery

Number of modern slavery survivors referred for support reaches record high.

Pic 1

According to latest Home Office figures, the number of potential modern slavery victims referred into the NRM for support in 2022 was 16,938.

That’s a 33% increase on 2021 figures, which saw 12,706 people referred for support, and are the highest figures since records began in 2009.

The NRM (National Referral Mechanism) is the government-funded support system for victims identified by first responders, such as social workers, police, or border force officials. It guarantees victims safe accommodation and support while they get their lives back on track.

Causeway are a subcontractor of the Modern Slavery Victim Care Contract, and provide NRM support to hundreds of people who enter the system each year.

The Home Office put the increase in referrals down to ‘the increase in detections at the border and, particularly, the large increase in small boats arrivals.’

Albanian nationals have now overtaken UK nationals as the most commonly referred nationality, with Eritrean nationals being the third most referred.

2022 figures show that 52% of the people referred into the NRM were adults (8,854), 78% of whom were male (6,874) and 22% (1,978) were female.

For child potential victims, 80% (5,607) were male and 20% (1,401) were female.

Overall, potential victims were most commonly referred for support because of labour exploitation, which accounted for 5,135 of referrals.

For adult potential victims, labour exploitation was most commonly reported (39%; 3,433), whereas child potential victims were most often referred for criminal exploitation (43%; 3,013), which could be down to a rise in county lines exploitation.