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New draft regulations risk excluding survivors from identification and support

June 29, 2022

The Government’s new draft Slavery and Human Trafficking (Definition of Victim) Regulations narrow the definition of a victim of trafficking and modern slavery, reducing the chances that victims will be identified.

The draft regulations were introduced without consulting anti-trafficking organisations and they could have far-reaching and damaging consequences for victims of trafficking and modern slavery.

A new joint briefing produced with ATLEU, ECPAT UK, Helen Bamber Foundation, and Hope for Justice outlines our concerns about these draft regulations which leave victims at risk of further exploitation and re-trafficking.

Official identification as a victim of trafficking and modern slavery is the gateway to support services and assistance including legal advice and safe house accommodation. For those subject to immigration control, identification is also essential to decisions about their leave. The consequences of not being correctly identified as a victim are extreme, leaving people at risk of destitution, further exploitation, and removal.

We are urging members of the committees debating the draft regulations to raise their concerns and redraft the regulations in consultation with the anti-trafficking sector, and to vote against them pending this redrafting.

We have also written to the Home Affairs Select Committee to express our concerns along with over 30 other organisations and experts.