Spot The Signs in your community

Recognising the key indicators of human trafficking in your community

The first step to stop the traffik is to spot it. Understanding the signs to look out for could help the most vulnerable people within your community.

Significant Signs

There are a number of signs that are common across all types of exploitation. Including, if a person:

  • acts as if instructed by another, as though they are forced or coerced to carry out specific activities
  • demonstrates signs of physical or psychological abuse, such as lacking self esteem, seeming anxious, bruising or untreated medical conditions
  • seems to be bonded by debt or has money deducted from their salary
  • has little or no contact with family or loved ones
  • is distrustful of authorities
  • has threats made against themselves or family members
  • is not in possession of their own legal documents

Specific Signs

Many of the main types of exploitation have significant signs that are specific to them. These include:

  • Do workers show signs of psychological or physical abuse? Do they appear frightened, withdrawn or confused?
  • Do workers have restricted movement on leaving or entering the premises? Are they always accompanied?
  • Are workers forced to stay in accommodation provided by the employer? Is the accommodation overcrowded?
  • Are workers forced to give incorrect information or claim to not know personal details?
  • Is the employer or somebody other than the worker holding the employee’s passport and legal documents?
  • Do workers lack the necessary protective equipment or suitable clothing? Have they received basic training?
  • Is there a group of workers of a similar nationality/age/gender who have a representative by whom they appear ‘coached’?
  • Does the person seem held in the employer’s home and forced to provide household support, such as care for children, cleaning and cooking?
  • Does the person appear to be working in excess of normal hours?
  • Does the person ever leave the accommodation unaccompanied?
  • Is there any indication the person has been subject to abuse, insults, threats or violence?
  • Does the person interact much with the family? Are they forced to eat alone?

Spotted the signs?

If you recognise any of these signs, it is essential that you share what you’ve seen with the relevant authorities.

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