Part 5 of the Nationality and Borders Bill would have a devastating impact on survivors of modern slavery.
If passed in its current form, survivors of modern slavery, including both British and non-UK survivors and child victims, would be denied life-saving support through a cluster of new exemptions and restrictions.
Under ‘Trafficking Information Notices’ the Home Office could remove support from survivors – even when they can evidence their exploitation – if details of abuse are shared ‘too late’.1
Recovery from trauma does not follow a ‘convenient timeline’. Survivors need time to share details, as they may fear retaliation from traffickers, the risk of deportation, or the system itself due to struggles accessing a support worker or lawyer.
As well as the trauma deadline, as many as 49% of survivors are at risk of missing out because of ‘support bans’. Under Part 5, survivors with a sentence of 12 months or more (including survivors of criminal exploitation and child victims with custodial sentences) would be denied access to safe housing, counseling and support.
But parliamentarians in the U.K. have a small window of opportunity to oppose these plans. Call on your MP to raise the concerns of survivors with colleagues in the House of Lords due to debate Part 5 of the Bill, which would:
- Create a harsher system for survivors with higher thresholds and therefore greater risk of support being rejected.
- Introduce cruel ‘trauma deadlines’ by putting a time limit on when survivors must disclose their experiences, before they are assumed to be lying.
- Block access to support for survivors who have criminal records, despite 49% of potential trafficking victims last year being forced to commit crimes.
Write to your MP today and urge them to act against the repeal of hard-won rights under the Modern Slavery Act, and use whichever platforms are at their disposal to raise these concerns with Government.