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A Game of Chance?: Long-term support for survivors of Modern Slavery

Deputy Director of the Centre for the Study of Modern Slavery (CSMS) at St Mary’s University, Twickenham Dr Carole Murphy has launched a report in the Palace of Westminster,

Dr Murphy presented her report ‘A Game of Chance: Long Term Support for Survivors of Modern Slavery’ to a number of prominent organisations in the modern slavery field, including The Human Trafficking Foundation, the Snowdrop Project and Baroness Newlove, the Victims Commissioner, at the launch event which was hosted by Lord McColl of Dulwich. 

The report is based upon findings from interview-based research, which was carried out across the UK with law enforcement officials and leading support agencies for victims of modern slavery and human trafficking. It highlights the significant and detrimental gaps in long-term support provision for survivors of modern slavery in the UK and provides recommendations for policymakers to address these gaps.

Lord McColl, who is currently sponsoring a Modern Slavery (Victim Support) Bill which is due for its second reading in the House of Commons in November, showed great appreciation for the contribution that Dr Murphy’s report would make in strengthening the evidence-base for his Bill.

Victim support agencies also commented on the usefulness of this rigorous academic research in fight for policy change, while the report’s contribution is also recognised through reference in the revised Trafficking Survivor Care Standards by the Human Trafficking Foundation.

Dr Murphy said, "I'm delighted to have had the opportunity to launch the report in the Palace of Westminster and to have contributed to raising awareness about the ongoing gaps in long-term support for survivors of trafficking in the UK. The Modern Slavery Act was regarded as groundbreaking by some commentators upon its introduction in 2015, however this report highlights that there is much more to be done to address gaps in service provision to ensure that recovery does not feel like a game of chance".

The full report can be downloaded from the St Mary’s website, where information about the appointment of Sir Tom Phillips KCMG as the new Director of the CSMS can be also be found.

The UK government has taken a comprehensive approach to modern slavery, providing support and intervening at different points in order to address this multifaceted problem. This includes supporting victims on the one hand, while also investigating and responding to the drivers of trafficking.

The 2014 UK Modern Slavery Strategy (MSS) outlined the commitment to protect vulnerable people from exploitation and to support the reintegration of victims into society. The strategy conveyed the intention to work with organisations to ensure that survivors would have access to ‘financial, social and psychological support’ to ensure reintegration of victims into society, recognising this as potentially a ‘long and complex process’.

Download the report

View launch event gallery