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Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery

Volume 592: debated on Monday 9 February 2015

11. What recent discussions she has had with police and crime commissioners on the priority they give to prosecuting and preventing human trafficking and modern slavery; and if she will make a statement. (907498)

My ministerial team and I engage regularly with PCCs on a range of issues. Most recently PCCs attended the international crime and policing conference which I hosted in January, and at that event the new designate independent anti-slavery commissioner, Kevin Highland, gave a keynote address about the importance of tackling modern slavery. I am committed to working with PCCs to ensure that the police remain focused on this terrible crime.

How many PCCs have made tackling modern slavery and human trafficking a strategic priority for their force?

PCCs have made a range of issues a strategic priority for their forces, as the hon. Lady will know. We are clear that the impetus for dealing with modern slavery is coming from the Government and that it is a priority for the National Crime Agency. Police and crime commissioners will of course set what they believe to be the most appropriate strategic priorities for their areas. I am interested that the hon. Lady wants PCCs to be interested in this matter, because her party wants to abolish them, and if that were to happen, they could take no interest in it whatever.