In the UK labour exploitation takes many different forms and the number of victims has increased year on year. The Commissioner works with partners to ensure worker rights are protected and law enforcement agencies appropriately pursue exploiters.
Following a visit to Vietnam in 2015, the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner established that little was known about the trafficking of Vietnamese nationals to the UK.
The Commissioner had unanswered questions about how victims are recruited, their routes to the UK, the forms of exploitation they experience and the criminal modus operandi of those perpetrating modern slavery crimes. The Commissioner therefore commissioned research to examine the dynamics of the exploitation of Vietnamese nationals en route to, and within, the UK.
The report was published in September 2017. It takes an analytical lens to a Vietnamese modern slavery victim’s journey – from their recruitment in Vietnam, and their experiences en route to the UK, to what happens when they finally arrive.
The report found that Vietnamese nationals are predominantly trafficked to the UK for labour exploitation, in the form of cannabis cultivation and nail bar work, and concluded that it is a highly gendered phenomenon, with the majority of those identified being male.
The Commissioner made recommendations to Her Majesty’s Government (HMG) for addressing the trafficking and modern slavery of Vietnamese nationals to the UK, and will continue to collaborate with stakeholders in the UK and Vietnam to drive forward the implementation of these recommendations, ultimately ensuring that vulnerable Vietnamese nationals are protected and traffickers brought to justice.