Modern slavery and human rights in business

How to identify and report modern slavery and human trafficking


As a business, you may come across individuals who you suspect are being trafficked or enslaved for labour exploitation. The signs in victims may vary from situation to situation, however, the following may indicate cases of modern slavery or human trafficking.

  • General signs - individuals being trafficked or enslaved may believe that they must work against their will, receive little or no payment and be unable to leave their work environment. Victims may show fear or anxiety and carry injuries that appear to be the result of an assault. They may not know their home or work address. They may not be in possession of their passport or other documents or they might always be accompanied by somebody else and not allowed to speak for themselves.
  • Children - children who have been trafficked may have no access to their parents or guardians, look intimidated and behave in a way that does not correspond with behaviour typical of a child their age. They will typically be engaged in work that is not suitable for children and travel unaccompanied by adults.
  • Labour exploitation - People who have been trafficked or enslaved for labour exploitation may live in groups in the same place where they work. They may leave those premises infrequently, if at all. They might not be dressed adequately for the work they do, have no labour contract, work excessively long hours, or lack basic training and professional licences. They might be subject to insults, abuse, threats or violence.

Further details on human trafficking indicators (PDF, 81K) and how to spot the signs of labour exploitation (PDF, 252K).

Report a modern slavery or human trafficking incident

If you suspect that someone has been trafficked or enslaved:​​​​

  • call 999 in case of an emergency  
  • call 101 about the general situation
  • call 0800 0121 700 for the Modern Slavery Helpline or report modern slavery online