Modern slavery

Vigil to honour victims of slavery and trafficking

‘We See You’, a vigil to honour victims of slavery and human trafficking, will be held on Saturday 25th July, 12-1pm. The vigil will feature speakers from The Clewer Initiative, Stop The Traffik, The Medaille Trust and The Triangle of Hope.

Modern slavery

The vigil has been organised by the Diocese of Liverpool in partnership with The Clewer Initiative, the organisation leading the Church of England’s response to the continuing issue of modern day slavery.

The event will raise awareness of modern day slavery and help people to spot signs to determine whether someone might be a victim of trafficking and what to do in such a situation. There will also be a reflection on slavery throughout history, and an act of prayer and remembrance for all who have been victims of slavery.

The vigil was due to take place earlier this year at Liverpool Cathedral but was cancelled due to the outbreak of COVID-19. The event will now take place on Zoom. It is free for all to attend, and people can book using Eventbrite.

The Diocese of Liverpool is committed to raising awareness of slavery in the Church and has formed strong local and global partnerships in recent years.

The Diocese partnered with the Dioceses of Virginia in the USA and the Dioceses of Kumasi, Ghana in 2017 to form the Triangle of Hope. Working together, the three dioceses are committed to transforming the effects of slavery throughout the world through repentance, reconciliation and mission. The Triangle of Hope takes part in youth pilgrimages each year and has oversight of the Tsedaqah Community, a missional community and social justice initiative based in the Diocese of Liverpool.

The Diocese partnered with The Clewer Initiative and appointed its first Diocesan Anti-Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Project Co-ordinator in 2017. Work which is ongoing through the work of the Tsedaqah Community. Liverpool Tsedaqah Community member, Jen Williams said:

“I attended an online forum by the Human Trafficking Foundation in May, and it was stated by the Modern Slavery Police Crime Unit that the faith sector in particular is able to provide vital intelligence in responding to incidences of modern day slavery and human trafficking in our communities.”

“Our parishes are busier than ever before keeping people safe and supporting people on the frontline. Churches throughout the Diocese are supporting asylum seekers, refugees, the homeless, and others living with poverty, addictions, domestic violence and other very difficult circumstances.”

“Slavery is a crime that continues today but is much more hidden. It is highly likely that we are coming into contact with people who are currently being coerced and deceived and living in exploitative situations - or who are at far greater risk because they are more vulnerable at the moment.”

“It is vital therefore that church communities are able to understand what to be looking out for and what to do to support people in these situations and how to report any suspicions or worries.”