Web chat tackles human trafficking

BIG ISSUE West Yorkshire's PCC Mark Burns-Williamson.
BIG ISSUE West Yorkshire's PCC Mark Burns-Williamson.

Human trafficking was in the spotlight during a live web chat held by West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson.

It gave participants the opportunity to ask the PCC directly what is being done about the issue.

Questions people asked him included: Whether there is a lot of human trafficking in West Yorkshire, what support is in place for victims and what the sentencing is for those found guilty of it.

Mark Burns-Williamson said: “Web chats are a useful way ofcommunicating with people who we might not otherwise reach.

“Human trafficking is a terrible crime which involves many victims across the UK and it is one of the key priorities in my Police and Crime Plan.

“It is a national problem but here in West Yorkshire I have provided funding to police to set up a specialist Human Trafficking Unit which researches and investigates the crime. This is only the second of its sort in the country.”

West Yorkshire Police have outlined some indicators that may suggest a person is the victim of human trafficking. These include: showing signs of physical and psychological trauma (such as bruises or lack of memory about recent events), seeming to be in debt to someone or being regularly moved around.

If you suspect someone is a victim, call police on 101. If someone is in immediate danger, ring 999.