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Report raises questions of whether over-stretched police forces are “treating trafficking victims as criminals by default” says MEP

A report conducted by HM’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services published today confirms that police forces are failing to tackle modern slavery.


Last year, Catherine Bearder MEP authored the European Parliament’s Report examining how EU member countries had implemented the 2011 Directive. Among other things, the 2016 Report found there were huge disparities in how different countries treated victims.


The South East MEP commented:  

“This is truly distressing news and my heart goes out to all those victims who are repeatedly treated as criminals or ignored by our police forces. 

“A clear lack of training and resources are leaving British forces woefully ill-equipped to deal with these cases - we have to start asking the question of whether our forces are treating trafficking victims as criminals by default. We have had enough evidence over the years that trafficking happens everywhere. Why can’t the system recognise this?

“Amber Rudd must raise the issue of modern slavery by turning words into action. Now is the time she must ensure our police forces have the proper tools at their finger tips to prevent huge injustices being committed to vulnerable people. Trafficking is happening in all areas of the UK and we all need to be aware of the signs and report it to police who must act quickly.”

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