The Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration, David Bolt, has published his report of the re-inspection of Border Force’s identification and treatment of Potential Victims of Modern Slavery.
The completed report was sent to the Home Secretary on 30 January 2018.
In December 2016, I made 12 recommendations for improvements to the way Border Force identified and treated potential victims of modern slavery encountered at the border. My recommendations followed 4 key themes: record keeping and data collection; training for Border Force officers; decision making and managing effective outcomes; and, partnership working and awareness raising.
The inspection report was published on 2 February 2017, along with the Home Office’s response, in which it “accepted” 9 of my recommendations, and “partially accepted” 3.
This re-inspection, ran from September to November 2017, examined what progress Border Force had made since my original report. As before, this work was carried out in co-operation with the UK Anti-Slavery Commissioner, and I am grateful to him and his team for their support.
The re-inspection found that Border Force had done a considerable amount of work towards implementing the recommendations, and I was satisfied that 7 of the 12 could now be considered “closed”, albeit in some cases, for example in relation to staff training, Border Force needed to ensure that it maintained the position it had achieved.
This re-inspection report makes no new recommendations, but in the case of 5 of the original recommendations, particularly those focused on improving record keeping and data collection, there was insufficient evidence that the work that had been done had been effective, and some improvements that were in train needed speeding up.
These 5 recommendations therefore remain “open”.