Human Trafficking - Human Rights Joint Committee Contents

Letter from Alan Campbell MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Home Office

  Thank you for your letter of 27 October 2009 requesting details of the future of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) Human Trafficking Team.

  First, may I apologise for the delay in responding to you letter, which is due to an administrative error.

  As you will be aware, the status of the MPS human trafficking team has been part of an MPS strategic review of organised immigration crime. On 11 December 2009 the outcome of that review was announced. Overall responsibility for the MPS's anti-trafficking work will transfer to the Clubs and Vice Unit, which will expand its remit to cover all forms of human trafficking (including labour trafficking) and in turn will move to the Specialist Crime Directorate, which deal with organised crime and house the outgoing Human Trafficking Team.

  The government has provided £2.3 million to the MPS for its work on organised immigration crime, which includes human trafficking, between 2007 when the trafficking team was established, and 2008-09. As we pointed out in our written response to the Home Affairs Select Committee report on human trafficking in August 2009, this funding was provided on a time limited basis. Our expectation was that it would be used to pump-prime work and mainstream it into the MPS core budget and business.

  It became apparent however that the MPS was not going to achieve this by end of the financial year 2008-09. The Government therefore agreed to provide an additional an exceptional contribution of £435,000 for the current financial year. This gave the MPS extra time to put in place a more long term arrangement for its anti trafficking work.

  Decisions on how to deploy police resources at the MPS are the responsibility of the Commissioner and his senior management team. Assistant Commissioner Cressida Dick has announced that moving responsibility for human trafficking into one single command will mean better co-ordination, less duplication and more accountability in the service provided to victims along with an increased focus on organised crime supported by the assets of the Specialist Crime Directorate.

  I trust this new arrangement will ensure that the MPS can continue to build on the progress it has made in dealing effectively with human trafficking.

20 January 2010

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