The Commissioner's Team

The Office of the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner includes staff members with a background in law enforcement, policy, victim support, research, human rights and those with years of general experience in the UK’s anti-slavery sector.

Christopher Ansell
Office Manager

Christopher Ansell is the Office Manager for the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner.

Christopher was a police officer for over 37 years and retired as a detective in 2013.  He investigated a number of cases of human trafficking, both in the UK and around the world. Following his retirement from the police and before joining the Commissioner’s team, Christopher was employed on the European Communities Against Trafficking Project as Project Support Coordinator. 

This was an EU funded project coordinated between the Borough of Westminster, the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea and the Metropolitan Police Human Trafficking and Kidnap Unit. The project also partnered with a specialist anti-trafficking charity, RAHAB, whom Christopher worked closely with. As part of this role, Christopher led on modern slavery training for frontline professionals.

Rebecca Baumgartner
Chief of Staff

Rebecca has worked in the Home Office for many years and has an interest in promoting good practice in the treatment of vulnerable people. She has led asylum teams and sought to put in place processes for interacting with asylum seekers with mental health issues and to raise awareness of the impacts of trauma. Rebecca was part of the team who conducted the 2014 review of the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) making recommendations, some of which are now being implemented through NRM Reform.

For two years Rebecca worked in the Diversity Team of the Home Office embedding diversity across the HO People Strategy. Prior to joining the Commissioner’s Office Rebecca worked in the Modern Slavery Unit where she covered a range of roles from Prevent policy, programme management, and beginning the procurement of a new victim care contract.

Rebecca is the Chief of Staff for the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner, setting up the team to support her and ensuring that her strategy is developed and programme managing its delivery.

Emma Crates
Prevention Lead

Emma is Prevention Lead at the Office of the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner, working with industry, the public sector, enforcement bodies and NGOs to develop more effective ways of detecting and fighting modern slavery in the workplace.

A former business journalist, Emma has written for a variety of publications, covering the built environment, supply chains, technology and human rights. She has been researching modern slavery since 2014 and is author of three reports on modern slavery for the Chartered Institute of Building, examining how business models, recruitment and procurement practices can contribute to exploitation, both domestically and internationally. Before joining the IASC office, she worked closely with CIOB on industry engagement with anti-slavery initiatives.

In her current role Emma is exploring best practice, drivers of change and the role that technology can play in detecting and preventing exploitation. She is also interested in industry initiatives to support survivors in their recovery.

Katherine Lawson
Communications Officer

Katherine Lawson is the Communications Officer at the Office of the UK’s Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner. She joined the team in early 2018 originally as a Policy Officer, supporting the delivery of the Commissioner’s work to ensure improved victim identification and care, and to drive better partnership working across the modern slavery sector in the UK.

She previously worked at the research institute Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, for five years focused on UK-Africa relations. In this capacity she researched and wrote reports on the illegal wildlife trade and on landmine clearance in Africa. Whilst at Chatham House she co-ordinated two All-Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs) on Nigeria and Angola. The Nigeria APPG conducted a research visit to Nigeria in 2018 which examined shared approaches to tackling human trafficking from Nigeria to the UK.

Jenna Teasdale
Research and Innovation Lead

Jenna Teasdale is the Research and Innovation Lead at the Office of the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner. She joined the team in Autumn 2019 to support delivery of the Commissioner’s work to maximise value from research and ensure it informs both policy and practice. Jenna first developed an interest in human trafficking whilst completing an MSc in Countering Organised Crime and Terrorism at University College London in 2012.

She began her career as a Border Force Officer and member of the Heathrow Safeguarding and Trafficking team, providing immediate support to potential victims and assisting with multi-agency operational activity. She has subsequently worked as an intelligence analyst, leading on modern slavery and human trafficking for Border Force Intelligence Analysis and undertaking a secondment to the Modern Slavery Police Transformation Unit. Most recently Jenna worked as Senior Intelligence Analyst in the Office of the Director of Labour Market Enforcement, leading on joint working and intelligence sharing for the 2019/20 Labour Market Enforcement Strategy.

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