The Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner, in collaboration with the University of Nottingham, has launched a new research project mapping modern slavery partnerships across the UK.

To combat modern slavery in the UK, a number of ‘partnerships’ have emerged in recent years in order to address the crime at a local and regional level. These partnerships are ‘multi-agency’ groups, with a variety of stakeholders including, but not limited to, police, local authorities, health services and charities. The partnerships meet regularly to explore how to tackle modern slavery in their area and have contributed to the fight against this crime by developing targeted training, awareness raising campaigns and guidance for professionals.

The Commissioner is responsible for spearheading the UK’s response to modern slavery, with a twofold aim of seeing more victims identified and supported, and more perpetrators punished. The UK’s modern slavery partnerships assist in meeting these aims. Furthermore, one of the Commissioner’s core five priorities is to identify, promote and facilitate good practice in partnership working; the Commissioner therefore hopes to discern areas of such practice that can be replicated across the UK.

The UK’s modern slavery partnerships have shown commitment and insight in tackling the crime and this new six-month project is the first attempt to ‘map’ existing multi-agency partnerships across the UK. The research will identify local, sub-regional and regional partnerships through a targeted questionnaire and interviews. Following this first phase of research an interactive map of UK wide modern slavery partnerships will be made available on the Commissioner’s website. The second phase of the project will focus on assessing good practice and end in the production of an online directory of partnerships.

The project will culminate in a conference, hosted by the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner and the University of Nottingham, where the findings will be shared with practitioners and delegates will be invited to discuss the ingredients needed for successful partnership working.

The Commissioner’s team will work closely with The University of Nottingham, home to the world’s largest group of rights and justice scholars – with 700 staff members, 300 postgraduate students and 22 research centres across all five of its faculties – giving the University a unique ability to tackle global challenges.

For more information on this research, and in order to take part and tell us about partnerships in your area, please contact the Commissioner’s Research and Evaluation Lead, Dr Claire Brickell: