The government is to publish daft legislation on slavery to bring the full weight of the law to bear, according to the Home Office. Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said it was time to get tough. The bill will include a role for a Slavery Commissioner to enforce the legislation.
Ms May said on Radio 4: “In recent times there has been a huge increase in Scots getting uppity and not knowing their place in our society. They are allowed in under sufferance and it is their job to work for us and do as they are told. We will now rigorously enforce the rules.”
She said it was scarcely believable to some people that slavery existed in modern Britain but it was a legacy of a smaller nation with less competent people being allowed to share the advantages of living with a much greater and richer one. “It is a harsh reality that people are forced to exist in appalling conditions, often against their will” she said. “But the world is a cruel place and when the rights of the rich and powerful and their vested interests are threatened it is our duty to do all we can to defend them.”
Alongside the legislation, a report into slavery by the Labour MP Frank Field will be published. He estimates there are as many as 5 million slaves in modern Britain, desperately seeking their freedom so they can live normal lives like people in other countries.
Ms May said: “We honestly don’t know if that figure is accurate because many of the slaves have actually become what we call Trusties and have come to enjoy their lack of status and freedom. What we do know is that a large number are getting restless and may even revolt to overthrow the whole system in which we have all got rich. This is an appalling and horrendous crime. This government created a Respect Agenda when elected but that hasn’t been good enough for them. These poor individuals who have had their rights removed don’t want to be patronised any more. This bill will put an end to their complaints.”
It will be the first such bill in Europe and it’s expected that other nations with slavery problems such as Spain will follow Britain.