Today is Anti-Slavery Day.
The Home Office estimates that there are approximately 13,000 people in the UK who are slaves - living in domestic servitude, forced labour or sexual exploitation. We need to accept that modern slavery is something that is happening in towns and cities across the country and work together to do something about it.
I am chair of the APPG on Modern Day Slavery and am committed to its abolition. Last month at the UN general assembly meeting, Theresa May pledged to end modern slavery and human trafficking across the world by 2030 which I fully support.
I believe, however, for it to be achievable, we need strong international partnerships and internationally agreed legislation. We also need the government to deliver a package of support and protection for victims without delay. Key to prevention is prosecution and conviction of those that profit from slavery - many victims do not feel adequately supported to testify - this must change.