We can all do our bit to end modern slavery.

When we think about slavery, you might picture someone in chains. But in reality, we have probably all seen victims of modern slavery in our everyday lives. It is a brutal crime that is often hidden. So what should we be looking out for?

Signs of Modern Slavery

1. You might notice that someone seems unable to move freely. Perhaps their movements are monitored, or they are transported to and from work.

2. Victims can often be isolated or seem to be controlled by a dominant figure, who may even be physically or verbally abusive towards them. You might notice anxious or confused behaviour, or that they avoid eye contact.

3. If they work in a home doing cooking or cleaning, they might rarely interact with the family, and lack their own living space or belongings.

4. You may also spot that they work unusually long hours, or that they lack the correct clothing, equipment, or training to safely do their job.

5. Victims will often lack any form of identification and may have little or no access to finances. Some may live in overcrowded accommodation provided by their employer.

Download our toolkit to share with your network.

Download the 'Spot The Signs' toolkit

What to do if you spot the signs:

If you're in the UK, and you suspect that someone is a victim of modern slavery, do not confront them about it - this could put them in further danger. Instead, speak to the relevant authorities:

If you are outside the UK, find out the relevant authority in your country, and if you think yourself are being exploited, then speak to your local embassy or consulate.

Coalition to Stop Slavery

Hestia is proud to be a founding member of the Coalition to Stop Slavery – a group of 16 anti-slavery organisations working together to raise public awareness of modern slavery and how to report any concerns.

Central to this are two new commercials that have been made by the team behind the famous John Lewis Christmas ads. You can watch and share the films on the new Coalition website.

What are we doing?

Our Modern Slavery Service has been active since 2011 and we’ve supported over 2,500 victims since then. We provide pan-London outreach support as well as five safe houses in London and Kent.

Our Phoenix Project provides volunteer-led, long-term support to victims of modern slavery in partnership with the British Red Cross.

From Friday 14 – Friday 20 October, we're hosting our 6th annual Art is Freedom exhibition at Trafalgar Square, Waterloo train station, South Kensington underground station (Thurloe Street), London Bridge train station and Paddington train station. Our exhibition is entirely created and co-curated by modern slavery survivors, focusing on their next chapter. 

We will also shortly be releasing our annual Underground Lives report - take a look at previous years' here.