PCC Keith Hunter said: “Modern slavery is very real and it is happening right now in our communities. It is important that we raise awareness of this vile trade in vulnerable people and learn to spot the signs that may indicate someone is being held in servitude. I am delighted to be able to fund this new post to work with all agencies involved in identifying and tackling modern slavery.” Andrew Smith said: "Modern Slavery and human trafficking present an ever-evolving threat to the safety and security of our region and the UK as a whole. This serious and organised crime affects us all, exploiting adults and young people as a commodity for financial and criminal gain.
Across the Humber region, partners, friends and colleagues are committed to tackling modern slavery in all its forms, disrupting serious organised crime and fully supporting victims to achieve meaningful recovery.
"I feel honoured to start this new role as co-ordinator of the partnership, together with statutory, third sector, emergency and criminal justice organisations we will work hard to improve prevention and victim care in Humberside.
"As the threat of modern slavery grows, so must our response and effectiveness. Serious and organised crime gangs and exploiters are well organised and resourced in avoiding justice. This commitment from the Police and Crime Commissioner and the Wilberforce Institute means we can truly make our area a hostile environment for those who seek to profit from human suffering."
Dr Alicia Kidd is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Wilberforce Institute and is also Vice Chair of the Humber Modern Slavery Partnership. She said:
“The implementation of this role is a big step forward in demonstrating that there is a real commitment and drive from practitioners in our region to tackle this crime and to support victims. While we have seen great progress since the inception of the HMSP, it will make a real difference having someone dedicated to its improvement and development.”
The Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation is an inter-disciplinary research institute dedicated to the study of slavery in all its forms, historical and contemporary. It provides a forum for academic discourse and interaction and actively works with partners in advancing public understanding of slavery, thereby informing political and social change.
In 2015 the Wilberforce Institute was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize, which recognises work that is considered of ‘outstanding excellence’.
To report anything suspicious or for advice on tackling modern slavery and human trafficking please call the Modern Slavery Helpline: 08000 121 700