We must tackle every form of modern slavery, including human trafficking. It is welcome news that Ministers have secured commitments from other governments and institutions, including the United Nations, the Commonwealth and the EU, to tackle modern slavery, and has successfully lobbied for the establishment of the first ever UN Sustainable Development Goal to end modern slavery. The Government is also working bilaterally with priority countries to deepen law enforcement cooperation.
In 2018, the Home Office announced a review of the Modern Slavery Act, which considered the provisions in the Act regarding Independent Child Trafficking Advocates. You may be pleased to know that in line with the review’s recommendations, the Advocates have been recently renamed Independent Child Trafficking Guardians (ICTGs).
Guardians provide an additional source of advice and support for all trafficked children. A key part of the role includes one-to-one support for those children who lack a figure of parental responsibility for them in the UK. The ICTG regional practice co-ordinator works alongside statutory bodies such as our police, social workers and the wider Criminal Justice System to build a multi-agency approach to the safeguarding of these vulnerable children.
I remain optimistic that more and more vulnerable children will receive the support and care they deserve as the Government remains committed to rolling out the guardians nationally.