Sussex PCC supports Crimestoppers advan campaign on Anti-Slavery Day

18/10/2018

Independent charity Crimestoppers is supporting a campaign this week that appeals for information from the local public, which is being led by the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner’s office.

The campaign, which follows activity carried out by the charity in June, is being led by Richard Lancashire, Modern Slavery Manager in Sussex Police. It runs over the coming week on social media, and an advan started touring the county on Monday, running through to Thursday. A promotional launch at Gatwick Airport is also due to take place on the 18th in support of Anti-slavery day.

Modern Slavery takes a variety of forms, many of which operate openly in public places. Whilst anyone can become a victim of this crime, Criminal gangs are likely to target vulnerable individuals and put them to work in industries that we now may regard as everyday business.

Crimestoppers’ statistics alone show in the first six months of the financial year (April-September), the charity has received nine reports on Modern Slavery. However, the crime is thought to be massively under-reported, which is why we are urging the public to come forward.

Glenys Balchin, Regional Manager for Surrey and Sussex, said: “We were encouraged by the results of our first campaign back in June, receiving three reports alone in that one month after we launched our ‘Signs to Spot’ activity.

“It’s so awful to hear that slavery is even an issue in this day and age, but we want to reassure victims that it is something that is taken extremely seriously, and make it clear to perpetrators that they will be found and prosecuted.

“We want to reassure people that we are here for them, to take their information anonymously, safely and securely. No-one will know you spoke to us, and I promise that once you have given your information, you’re done. Just tell us what you know by speaking up, and keeping your community safe.”

Katy Bourne, Police and Crime Commissioner for Sussex, said: “Modern slavery is happening in Sussex and is currently an under-reported crime. This campaign is calling on the public to be more aware of things happening in their peripheral vision, where too often the signs of modern slavery are present but going unrecognised and opportunities to report are missed.

“The national definition of human trafficking, or modern slavery encompasses several forms of exploitation as we are seeing here in Sussex, with children being forced to commit crimes for gangs and the recruitment of rough sleepers.

“I fund an Anti-Modern Slavery Delivery Manager to raise awareness and co-ordinate police and partner agencies to better understand the complexities and the scale of modern slavery and human trafficking across Sussex. We must ensure that the right information and intelligence is recognised, escalated and investigated in a way that maximises the safeguarding of potential victims and improves prosecution opportunities for suspects.

“Help us keep our community safe by being vigilant and reporting any concerns you may have either anonymously via Crimestoppers or directly to Sussex Police.”

Crimestoppers is the independent charity that provides the 0800 555 111 telephone number and online form at crimestoppers-uk.org. They take information in around 200 languages and guarantee that those who contact us will remain 100% anonymous, they will never have to give a statement to the police or go to court.

If you have any information, please contact Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through our Anonymous Online Form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org, safe in the knowledge that you will never have to give a statement to the police or go to court.

Notes for editors

Notes to Editors

Advan locations this week in Sussex:
Wednesday: Brighton & Portslade
Thursday: Worthing, Littlehampton & Chichester

  • Crimestoppers is an independent charity which helps the police to solve crimes, making communities safer. It does this by operating the 24/7 telephone number 0800 555 111 which people can ring to pass on information about crimes anonymously. They can also use our Anonymous Online Form.
  • Around 14 people are arrested and charged every day as a result of information given to Crimestoppers.
  • Since Crimestoppers began in 1988, it has received over 1.8 million actionable calls, resulting in more than 140,000 arrests and charges. More than £135 million worth of stolen goods has been recovered and over £340 million worth of illegal drugs has been seized.
  • In 2005, Crimestoppers launched the UK's Most Wanted on its website which allows the public to view images of criminals and pass on vital information about their whereabouts. It has been highly successful, with over 4,000 arrests to date.
  • Crimestoppers UK was founded by Lord Ashcroft, KCMG PC, Chairman of Trustees. In 1988, he launched Crimestoppers in the Metropolitan Police area.
  • Crimestoppers' 'call to action' is built on a three-way partnership between the business community, the police and the media.
  • The Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) is the foremost investigative agency for labour exploitation in the UK. Its mission is to prevent, detect and investigate worker exploitation across the entire economy. Find out more at www.gla.gov.uk
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