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Research: Prevention, Policy and Practice

Toolkit for Monitoring and Evaluating Initiatives to Tackle Modern Slavery

This toolkit, produced by Dr Ruth Van Dyke (Visiting Research Fellow), aims to aid organisations and partnerships who seek to make practical responses to the problem of modern slavery but also wish to record what they have done and to evaluate the outcomes of their practice.

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Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking – Long-term Support for Survivors

Research commissioned in 2017 set out to examine gaps in service provision for survivors. Interviews with frontline service providers and police were conducted across the UK and Scotland by Dr Carole Murphy and Research Associate Anne-Marie Barry. The findings highlighted gaps in service provision at all stages of the journey of recovery, often with severe consequences. The main recommendations in this widely-cited report include implementing the Trafficking Survivors Care Standards (Human Trafficking Foundation), support for Lord McColl’s Modern Slavery (Victim Support) Bill and the introduction of professional standards and statutory guidelines for the sector.

The Centre for Modern Slavery Conference

Left to right: Lara Bundock, Founder and CEO of the Snowdrop Project; Dr Carole Murphy, Research Lead Centre for the Study of Modern Slavery, and Senior Lecturer in Criminology and Sociology at St Mary’s; Philippa Roberts, Director of Legal Policy, Hope for Justice and Louise Gleich, Senior Policy Officer, Human Trafficking, Care UK.

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Typologies of Organised Crime: Human trafficking and modern slavery from Nigeria, Albania and Vietnam

In 2017 the Centre was one of 10 organisations to receive funding from Phase 1 of the UK government’s Modern Slavery Innovation Fund for a research project focused on human trafficking and modern slavery from Albania, Nigeria and Vietnam.

The research, led by Dr Sasha Jesperson and Anne-Marie Barry, assessed the role of organised crime networks in the movement and exploitation of people from these three countries, which consistently feature as top origin countries for potential victims of modern slavery identified in the UK. Key questions included: what role do criminal networks play throughout the various stages and routes to the UK, and how are they structured? How does modern slavery and human trafficking fit in with broader criminal activities and wider criminal networks? What are the financial flows associated with human trafficking and modern slavery? How do we understand the often extremely grey area between human trafficking and human smuggling?

The research also analysed the existing response by law enforcement and policy makers, and identified key entry points to address the issue. The research took place in Albania, Nigeria and Vietnam, as well as countries considered to be ‘transit hubs’ to the UK: Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, France and Belgium. A wide range of key informants were interviewed, including national and international law enforcement officials, civil society organisations and NGOs, survivor support services, prosecutors and government officials. This enabled researchers to build a picture of human trafficking from source to destination and gain a wide range of perspectives as to the involvement of organised crime.

Three reports were produced and disseminated to the UK Government and law enforcement officials. The findings will also be published in a forthcoming publication: ‘Human Trafficking: An Organised Crime?’ Hurst & Co. 2019


Decolonising the Discourse on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery

CSMS Research Fellow Dr Runa Lazzarino’s article on Fixing the Disjuncture, Inverting the Drift: Decolonizing Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery was published in the October 2019 edition of the Journal of Modern Slavery: 

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The article builds on discussion at an international symposium (organised by Dr Lazzarino) at University College London in 2017, and represents a snapshot compilation of the complexity of the problems involved in the currently Western-centric discourse concerning human trafficking and modern slavery. The article also points to ways to decolonise this discourse so as both to conceptualise the issues more fairly, and to assist victims and survivors of human exploitation.