Modern Slavery Strategy?

By Lorena Arocha

On the 29th of November, the coalition government launched its new Modern Slavery Strategy[1], making headlines on all major news outlets[2]. As part of this strategy, the Home Office commissioned its Chief Scientific Advisor, Professor Bernard Silverman to estimate the scale of modern slavery in the UK. He came up with an estimate of between 10,000-13,000 people being under modern slavery in the UK using existing data from 2013. To get to this number, he used a technique called ‘Multiple Systems Estimation’. This technique is a development of a capture-recapture estimation method often used in ecology to determine the size of a particular animal population. This method has been used in the past by the Special Action Programme to Combat Forced Labour of the International Labour Organisation in 2005 to first estimate Forced Labour in the World[3] and is routinely applied to estimating human rights violations. Continue reading