Child Exploitation Greater Manchester





Report any incidents or concerns:

If you are a young person and need help, contact Childline at 0800 1111 or via their website.

If you are worried about a young person, contact NSPCC’s helpline at 0808 800 5000 or via their website.

If you would like to report anonymously call Crimestoppers at 0800 555 111 or visit their website.

Please remember that you don’t have to be sure of something being modern slavery or human trafficking in order to report it. If something seems suspicious it’s worth reporting it. 


The situation

Programme Challenger and STOP THE TRAFFIK have identified forced criminality as a form of modern slavery in Greater Manchester.

Criminal networks and gangs coerce their victims to:

  • Sell class A drugs
  • Commit violent offences
  • Commit arson
  • Store firearms
  • Hold & move money

A common system is ‘County Lines’, where gangs and organised networks force victims to travel from urban areas to different locations to deliver drugs.

This is particularly prevalent in Greater Manchester and the victims are not always moved outside the area boundaries.

Who is at risk?

Whilst anyone can be at risk of modern slavery, victims of ‘County Lines’ are frequently children and young adults.

They are left for days in unfamiliar surroundings until they have sold all the drugs.

Victims are recruited and controlled through:

  • Deception
  • Intimidation
  • Violence and threats towards them and their families
  • Grooming

These young people could be missing from school, home or care. It is key to work with schools, youth centres, housing and drug services to raise awareness, identify those at risk of exploitation and communicate where to find help and support.

Exploitation can also take the form of ‘Cuckooing’. This involves perpetrators taking over victims’ homes to store drugs and firearms and run criminal activities.

‘Trapped’ campaign

The ‘Trapped’ campaign was developed by Programme Challenger and it aims to raise awareness of all forms of criminal exploitation, in recognition that young people and vulnerable adults may feel ‘Trapped’ and need support to ‘find a way out’.

The following short film was developed with local communities and actors to highlight how people can be exploited:

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Latest posts


"1 in 5 victims report having come into contact with healthcare services during the time they were being trafficked"- 2016 Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner, Kevin Hyland.

We're speaking at #NHSsafeguarding conference about the role of the #NHS in preventing #ModernSlavery

We received 418 reports of potential exploitation of workers in the food industry in 2018. That includes those working in pubs, hotels, restaurants and takeaways. Popping out for a bite to eat this week? Keep your eyes peeled for signs of exploitation and call us on 0800 432 0804

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