UCF Global Perspectives


Human Traffickers Target UK’s Homeless Citizens

Alex Rister, Bok Fellow, Human Trafficking Awareness

July 2, 2019

According to research by Unseen, homeless citizens in the United Kingdom are among 7% of all reported human trafficking cases (Reuters). Andrew Smith, Chief Executive of Hull Homeless and Chair of Humber Modern Slavery Partnership, said, “Traffickers often gain people’s trust at soup kitchens and drop-in [shelters] and trick them into slavery through false stories of success and money” (Aljazeera). Additional targets for trafficking homeless citizens include train stations, parks, and on the street (Bristol Live, Independent).

Unseen set up a human trafficking hotline in October 2016. Approximately 350 cases reported to the hotline from October 2016 to April 2019 involved homelessness – either before, during, or after the trafficking situation (Reuters). In addition to the hotline, Unseen operates survivor safe houses and collaborates with community partners including law enforcement and government officials to end human trafficking. For more information, visit https://www.unseenuk.org.






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