Modern slavery is a serious crime in which people are coerced or deceived into a situation where they are exploited, for the purpose of making profit.
It takes many forms including trafficking for sexual exploitation (prostitution, strip clubs, escort work and pornography), domestic servitude (working as cleaners, carers or nannies) and forced labour in work such as nail bars and car washes, among others.
Women who escape modern slavery are particularly vulnerable to re-exploitation by predatory individuals who may offer women accommodation. Due to vulnerabilities such as homelessness, destitution and learned behaviour; rough sleepers are systematically targeted by traffickers. We know from our work that many survivors would prefer to live in ordinary homes and feel they would benefit from supportive shared living.
Shared Lives Plus is funded by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport’s ‘tampon-tax’ to support women survivors of modern-day slavery in to supportive shared living. It is part of a wider partnership project with charities working with survivors, including Crisis, Hestia, Bawso and Belfast Women’s Aid.
As well as ensuring that survivors of modern slavery who have health and social care needs, can access Shared Lives, we are piloting a new model called KeyShare. KeyShare will focus on accommodation for women who don’t have care and support needs but who would benefit from living in an ordinary household with people who understand and have empathy for their needs.
We are funded to pilot five shared living arrangements in London until March 2021. Schemes from other areas can also get in touch to find out how to extend their offer to survivors of modern day slavery, and build skills on becoming more trauma informed.
Below you can find out more about what is involved in hosting women survivors of trauma, in the report by National Development Team for Inclusion (NDTi) ‘Hosting women who have experienced trauma’.
We have also written our comprehensive ‘Modern slavery guidance for shared living’, which outlines the key definitions and benefits of Shared Lives and KeyShare, as well as responsibilities of those involved, in supporting victims of modern slavery.
Our Development Officer, Ali Miller, leads on this work and welcomes any interest from Shared Lives schemes and carers, people accessing Shared Lives or people working in the field of modern-day slavery. You can contact Ali on 07867 452159 or email@example.com