Modern Slavery & Hidden Voices


Modern Slavery affects an estimated 46.8 million people globally and the number of victims is rising year on year in the UK.

In Cornwall, there have been 31 Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking cases reported in the last 12 months. These are only the reported cases.

Slavery exists in Cornwall, the problem is growing and we want to do something about it.


Hidden Voices is where we decided to start. This is a new resource from The Clewer Initiative, designed to help churches and communities respond to Modern Slavery. 

The training focuses on Modern Slavery in Cornwall and includes Biblical reflections, case studies, and practical tools and activities. Plus we also had local contributors Steve Rowell (Cornwall Council’s Serious Organised Crime Operational Lead) and Naomi Bruce (founder of charity Bringing Freedom).

This was run as a partnership between The Clewer Initiative, New Street Church. Transformation Cornwall, The Diocese of Truro, Transforming Mission, Falmouth & Penryn Churches Together, and Churches Together Cornwall. Now the training has finished we have 25 people from across Cornwall ready and equipped for action.


Can local communities do anything about modern slavery?

The truth is local people are key! For starters they can spot the signs of modern slavery and help the police to find victims. They can prevent vulnerable people they work with, like the homeless, from being trafficked or exploited. And they can support the survivors of modern slavery and help them to overcome the trauma they have experienced.

Churches are especially well placed to do this as they are already deeply rooted and invested in their local communities. And as Christians, we serve a God who we believe still asks his people to speak up for the oppressed and to work for justice. This gives us a powerful motivation for getting stuck into the issue of Modern Slavery and working together to take action.

Our hope is that the group formed through the Hidden Voices training will have been inspired to soon start projects of their own. These are currently in the early planning stages but will become more concrete in the coming months. They might not have all the answers, but they will certainly know where to start.