An exhibition to help people spot the tell tale signs of human trafficking is coming to Lincoln
The Invisible People exhibit is part of a campaign by the National Crime Agency challenging people to recognize the signs of human trafficking.
The exhibition, brought to the city by Police and Crime Commissioner Marc Jones, displays images of modern slavery in agriculture, construction, cannabis farming and food processing, child trafficking for sexual exploitation and forced prostitution.
Each image at the event, held in the Cornhill on Saturday and Sunday (Feb 17 and 18), also has a text explaining how you can recognise the signs of modern slavery in our communities.
The NCA has teamed up with photographers including multiple award winner Rory Carnegie and human rights charity the Helen Bamber Foundation to recreate the lives of Invisible People and expose the reality of modern slavery.
PCC Marc Jones said: “Human trafficking and modern slavery are amongst the most evil of crimes.
“To subject other human beings, children amongst them, to this level of degradation, cruelty and abuse is abhorrent and our communities must do everything we can to put an end to these horrific offenses.
“If this exhibition can prompt just one member of the public to spot the signs and help free a victim it will be worth it.”
Will Kerr, Director of Vulnerabilities for the NCA said: “This exhibition aims to show that, while victims are sometimes hidden away, they are often working in plain sight.
“Look out for people who are often withdrawn, scared or unwilling to interact. They may be showing signs of mistreatment and ill health or living in over-crowded, cramped and dirty accommodation.
“Trust your instincts, and when you think something doesn’t look right speak out.”
A walk of prayer will take place at 9.30am on the Saturday, linking the exhibition in the Cornhill with an event at Lincoln Cathedral to discuss the problem of modern slavery.
The Lincoln Modern Slavery Summit, held in collaboration with the Clewer Initiative, will be held on Saturday between 10am and 1pm in the Chapter House.
Eleven defendants were recently convicted of offences following a series of linked trials relating to modern slavery and fraud after a special operation by Lincolnshire Police.
The case was part of the force’s Operation Pottery investigation, which has been one of the largest investigations of its kind in the country.
Anyone with suspicions should call their local police on 101 or the Modern Slavery Helpline 08000 121 700.