Domestic Servitude Animation

Domestic servitude is one of the least identified exploitation types of modern slavery in the UK, accounting for almost 8% of reports behind labour, sexual and criminal exploitation. This does not mean that it is necessarily less common, but because it literally occurs behind closed doors, it isn’t identified or recorded.

Domestic servitude typically involves victims working in a private family home where they are ill-treated, humiliated, performing tasks, subjected to unbearable conditions or working hours and made to work for little or no pay. The victim could be placed in servitude by their own family members or partner, who often use their position of power as control, making threats of even withholding a passport. It can also be perpetrated by an employer not related to the victim, where the victim is living within the employers home. e.g. au pair, nanny etc.  

Over the last two years, there has been a specific increase in reports of domestic servitude within West Yorkshire, indicating women from Pakistan and Bangladesh are being brought to the UK and exploited in domestic homes. This type of domestic servitude is likely to be happening in many other areas across the UK.

The team from the West Yorkshire Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, the Modern Slavery charity Hope for Justice, West Yorkshire Police and the Modern Slavery Organised Immigration Crime Programme have collaborated to develop a new animation on one type of domestic servitude, highlighting the signs, raising awareness and encouraging reporting of this hidden crime. The animation has been launched to coincide with UN World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, it highlights the signs, raises awareness and encourages reporting of this hidden crime.

The animation is an anonymised real-life story of a survivor of domestic servitude, which follows the journey of a young woman moving from her home country to the UK. As well as English, the animation has therefore been translated into Urdu, Punjabi and Bengali with subtitles.

Links to the animations






Domestic Servitude Support Organisations


Modern Slavery Helpline
Phone: 08000 121 700

Hope for Justice
Phone: 0300 008 8000

Karama Nirvana
Phone: 0800 5999 247

Phone: 0800 555 111



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This is the website of the NPCC Modern Slavery and Organised Immigration Crime (MSOIC) Unit.  We work to support police officers, police staff and law enforcement partners to lead the fight against modern slavery,  human trafficking and OIC. 

Our aim is to help to deliver a consistent response to protecting victims and targeting offenders - and to work with partners to ultimately help prevent exploitation from having a place in our society.

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