THE report of a parliamentary committee into a proposed
modern-slavery law has been welcomed by charities, and by the
Archbishop of Canterbury.
The Parliamentary Joint Select Committee on Modern Slavery
published its report on the draft slavery Bill on Tuesday.
Among the improvements it recommended were: creating separate
offences for exploiting and trafficking children; strengthening the
scheme to recover the profits of slavery from traffickers; and
ensuring that the new post of Anti-Slavery Commissioner was
The report, by a committee of MPs and peers - including the
Bishop of Derby, the Rt Revd Alastair Redfern - also suggested
putting victims' rights on a statutory basis, and working to make
sure that no goods or services produced by slaves elsewhere in the
world could be sold in the UK.
In a statement, Archbishop Welby said that the committeehad made
a significant contribution to the anti-slavery campaign in Britain:
"This pioneering Bill setsa high standard for governments around
the world, who will be watching to see how our Government handles
the issue of modern slavery.
"The launch of the Global Freedom Network last month showed that
people of faith are determined to contribute to combating modern
slavery and human trafficking (News, 21
"I very much hope that the Home Office, as it prepares to
publish its own Bill on modern slavery, will take the committee's
recommendations extremely seriously."
The intention to give every child rescued from human trafficking
an independent legal guardian has also been praised by the
The charity's chief executive, Matthew Reed, said: "Thousandsof
children are found each year on their own, including many whoare
fleeing war and violence. With no adult to protect their interests,
many have been left at risk of abuse, or facing a hostile climate
of suspicion and doubt, which denies them the help and protection
"This important move will help make sure that trafficked
children are treated first and foremost as children in need."
The Home Secretary, Theresa May, announced plans to createnew
anti-trafficking laws in August last year, and the Government's
draft Bill was published in December (News, 20
A report by the Labour MP Frank Field, published at the same
time, suggested that there were as manyas 10,000 people held in
slavery in the UK today.