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Network backs apps to help people report modern slavery


The multi-agency network responsible for tackling modern slavery in Cleveland has endorsed two free apps to help agencies identify where the practice is taking place.

Cleveland Anti-Slavery Network is getting behind the Safe Car Wash and the Unseen app, which both offer a convenient way for the public to report suspicious circumstances in confidence.

Safe Car Wash asks users a number of questions about the car wash they are using, including working conditions, staff dynamics and the cost of the wash.

If the answers indicate a strong likelihood of modern slavery, the users are advised to call the Modern Slavery Helpline and all data from the app is shared with the National Crime Agency and the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority.

The Unseen app has a simple guide to recognising the signs of modern slavery and allows users to report concerns to help free more victims of slavery.

Cleveland Anti-Slavery Network was established earlier this year by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and has begun work to tackle slavery and trafficking across Cleveland.

Chair Robin Brierley said: “These apps are a fantastic tool to help agencies map where they believe modern day slavery may be taking place.

“Many of us have concerns about the vulnerable individuals working at businesses or on the streets and these apps present a convenient way for the public to report the conditions they see.”

Chief Inspector Wendy Tinkler from Cleveland Police said: “Unfortunately we cannot monitor every business or household across Cleveland at all times and we need our local residents to report their concerns. 

“These two free apps enable the public to report conditions they consider to be suspicious, allowing agencies to build a picture to pass to local forces. 

“We can then act upon these concerns in order to prevent the exploitation of those most vulnerable in our communities and ensure that they are appropriately safeguarded from further harm.”

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland, Barry Coppinger, said: “I established Cleveland Anti-Slavery Network because there is a clear need for agencies across the area to come together to free people from the horrific world of modern slavery.

“These apps could play an important role in understanding how wide-spread the practice is – not only in Cleveland – but across the country.”

More information about the Safe Car Wash app can be found here https://www.theclewerinitiative.org/safecarwash and further information about the Unseen app can be found here https://www.unseenuk.org/news/55


Posted on Thursday 16th August 2018
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