Theresa May plans new law to tackle modern-day slavery in Britain

Home Secretary says battling trafficking would be one of the 'highest priorities' for the new National Crime Agency

The Government is bringing in tougher sanctions to tackle modern-day slavery in Britain.

Home Secretary Theresa May said a new law would be introduced during this session of parliament.

Writing in the Sunday Times, she insisted it was "scarcely believable" the problem still existed in the UK.

"Vulnerable people from all over the globe are trafficked into Britain every day," she wrote.

"Most end up working as modern-day slaves, without pay, without rights and without hope."

Stressing that some Britons had been trafficked within the country, Mrs May said whatever the nationality of victims "our first concern must be to free them".

She said the best way to do that was to "maximise the number of modern-day slave drivers we convict and imprison".

Since the deaths of 23 Chinese cockle-pickers in Morecambe Bay in 2005, all gangmasters - who supply large numbers of workers for agriculture or other labour-intensive activities - have been required to be members of the Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA).

Mrs May said the Government's Modern Slavery Bill would create trafficking prevention orders, barring anyone convicted of a trafficking offence from gaining GLA membership.

They could also face restrictions on their ability to own a company, visit certain places or work with children or young women.

A modern slavery commissioner will also be appointed to hold law enforcement and government bodies to account.

Mrs May wrote: "It has been a profound shock to discover the extent to which slavery has reappeared in our country.

"We can and we will eliminate it - providing everyone at every level of society does what they can to help.

"No man, woman or child should be left to suffer through modern slavery."

The Home Secretary said tackling trafficking would be one of the "highest priorities" for the new National Crime Agency, which will take over the responsibilities of the Serious and Organised Crime Agency from October.

PA

News
peoplePaper attempts to defend itself
Voices
voicesWe desperately need men to be feminists too
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Account Executive/Sales Consultant – Permanent – Hertfordshire - £16-£20k

£16500 - £20000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently r...

KS2 PPA Teacher needed (Mat Cover)- Worthing!

£100 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: KS2 PPA Teacher currently nee...

IT Systems Manager

£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...

IT Application Support Engineer - Immediate Start

£28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Software Application Support Analyst - Imm...

Day In a Page

Syria air strikes: ‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings

Robert Fisk on Syria air strikes

‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings
Will Lindsay Lohan's West End debut be a turnaround moment for her career?

Lindsay Lohan's West End debut

Will this be a turnaround moment for her career?
'The Crocodile Under the Bed': Judith Kerr's follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

The follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

Judith Kerr on what inspired her latest animal intruder - 'The Crocodile Under the Bed' - which has taken 46 years to get into print
BBC Television Centre: A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past

BBC Television Centre

A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past
Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum