Learn the signs

Report a concern

If more of us are aware of the signs of modern slavery and how to report it, then more victims can be removed from harm. It will also help weaken the criminal networks behind this exploitation.

Signs of slavery
    • Has indications of physical or psychological abuse
    • Has untreated injuries
    • Looks unkept, malnourished or untidy
    • Appears anxious/agitated or withdrawn and neglected
    • Always wears the same clothes and/or the clothes they wear may not be suitable for their type of employment
    • May engage in substance misuse, such as alcohol and drugs
    • Lives in unclean, cramped or overcrowded accommodation
    • Lives and is employed at the same location
    • Does not have many/any personal possessions
    • Rarely allowed to travel on their own
    • Seems under the control or influence of others
    • Rarely interacts with or appears unfamiliar with their neighbourhood or place of employment
    • Has relationships that are not typical e.g. a boyfriend/girlfriend who is much older
    • Has no official identification documents
    • Has little opportunity to move freely and may have had their travel documents retained e.g. passports
    • Is dropped off/collected for work either very early or late at night on a regular basis
    • Has unusual travel arrangements – children are dropped off/picked up in private cars/taxis at strange times and in unusual places
    • Avoids eye contact and/or appears frightened
    • Is hesitant to talk to strangers
    • Fears police/people in authority for many reasons
    • Does not know who to trust or where to get help
    • Fears deportation
    • Fears violence to them or their family
    • Has limited English language skills
Share the signs

Get help or report a concern

If you or someone else are in immediate danger please call 999.
If you see something that doesn’t look right, phone the free, 24-hour Modern Slavery & Exploitation Helpline on