SBRC and Police Scotland to enable business owners to help human trafficking victims

SBRC and Police Scotland to enable business owners to help human trafficking victims

Human trafficking has been on the rise in Scotland in recent years, with exploiters targeting the agriculture, fisheries, and food sectors, say Police Scotland.

On 26 June at 10am, Police Scotland officers seconded to the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) will host an online presentation to help business owners identify the signs of human trafficking and help free its victims. More details are available here.

Jude McCorry, CEO of SBRC, said, “We often think of human trafficking as it relates to industries such as nail salons or car washes – businesses which are closed at the moment due to the lockdown. However, this does not mean human trafficking has stopped. Police Scotland’s intelligence suggests traffickers are targeting industries where demand for labour is on the rise: agriculture, fisheries, and food.

“Human trafficking is happening across all communities, whether urban or rural. This webinar will educate business owners on the current trends, enable them to spot the signs of potential victims of human trafficking and empower them to support the prosecution of those responsible for exploitation.”

Over the next few weeks, police officers and their colleagues from the National Human Trafficking Unit will be visiting businesses throughout rural Scotland including farms, fisheries, and food processing plants to engage with owners and raise awareness of how these industries can support Police Scotland in tackling the traffickers.

David MacCrimmon, Serious and Organised Crime Lead at SBRC added: “Most businesses are ethical. No one wants to employ people who may be being exploited. Legitimate businesses will carry out due diligence, but many will sub-contract the recruitment of labour and that’s where traffickers can insinuate themselves into the industry. Right now, we are concerned there may be a shift in exploitation to the food production and farming industries.

“Victims of human trafficking are vulnerable – they may be here illegally, may not speak English, and may feel they have no other choice. We want to raise awareness and to identify anyone who may be involved in trafficking and exploitation, whether as a potential victim or as a trafficker, and ensure victims get the help they need.”

More information and registration details for the webinar are available here.

Anyone with any information about potential human trafficking or labour exploitation should contact Police Scotland via 101 or make an anonymous report to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111

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