Prime Minister David Cameron has called for tough action against human traffickers.
Opening an exhibition highlighting the hidden nature of modern day slavery, Mr Cameron said: “Modern day slavery comes in many forms, in many ways, and we have to have a really concerted approach to crush it, to stamp it out and to make sure that we look at the rights of those who are affected and take a criminal approach to those who are the traffickers and above all call it what it is: slavery.”
The exhibition in the House of Commons was designed by young people at the Central St Martin’s College of Arts in London and recorded the invisible nature of victim’s lives and their suffering.
It was run by the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Human Trafficking and the Human Trafficking Foundation.
Immigration Minister Mark Harper and several other high profile MPs visited the exhibition.
Mr Harper updated organisers on work being carried out both in the UK and internationally to prosecute criminals and stop trafficking gangs in their tracks.
“Human trafficking is abhorrent and the government is committed to combating this crime in all its forms. We are already making significant progress in the fight against trafficking,” Mr Harper said. “Investment in training for front line professionals to identify and support victims, our commitment to improving data collection, work with the private sector to protect workers and more personalised care and support for victims are making a real difference.”
He went on to say that such exhibitions were important in bringing “this crime to the forefront of our minds and help raise that awareness which could make all the difference in cracking down on the criminals responsible.”
The government recently launched two new toolkits to help police and healthcare professionals on the front line to better identify and support victims of the crime.