Slavery is largely a hidden crime, but we can all do more to highlight it if we know the signs to look out for.
We're urging you, the public, to give us information so we can pass it onto the authorities, anonymously, so they can help those who are trapped in slavery to escape.
Across Yorkshire and Humberside we’re raising awareness of sex slavery in the region, particularly in relation to new brothels, or ‘pop-up’ brothels, as they’re also known.
New brothels are usually newly-acquired properties, often privately rented flats or houses, in towns and cities, which may only used as a brothel for a short period of time; and budget hotels or holiday properties.
Many of the women forced to work in these brothels are Eastern European, Thai and Nigerian; and may also be living in the property for the short period of time the brothel is running.
There are a number of signs which could indicate a pop-up brothel is being run:
- Limited activities usually associated with new people moving into a property (e.g. no removals).
- Limited, or scarcely, furnished - appears no one actually living there.
- Multiple women living at the address, or who may be brought to and taken from the address by an individual.
- Multiple vehicles visiting the property at any one time.
- Many frequent visitors, usually male, who don’t stay for long periods of time.
We're looking for your help with finding out who is running these brothels so we can help to get the women, who are being used as sex slaves, the assistance they need to escape the abuse and exploitation they are suffering from.
These women are often very vulnerable and subject to abuse. The victims may:
- Show signs of physical/mental abuse, injuries or poor health.
- Be unable to come and go from the property without someone escorting them.
- Be unable to communicate freely with others, either due to a language barrier or not being allowed to speak for themselves.
- Be unfamiliar with local surroundings or isolated from the local community.
You can help by giving us information anonymously on this crime. Call 0800 555 111, or fill in our quick & easy online form, here on our website.
Do you think there is one in your city or town? Do you know who is running these brothels? Have you seen them advertised? Tell us what you know, not who you are.